Skip to main content

Anderson, not Hammond, to start Game 3 for Senators

by Chris Stevenson / NHL.com

OTTAWA – Ottawa Senators goaltender Craig Anderson will start Game 3 of the Eastern Conference First Round series against the Montreal Canadiens (7 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CBC, TVA Sports).

East (A1) vs. (W1)
  Canadiens vs. Senators
Montreal leads 2-0

The Senators trail the best-of-7 series 2-0.

Andrew Hammond, whose 20-1-2 record as a starter in the NHL sparked the Senators' late-season run to the Stanley Cup Playoffs, gave up seven goals in the two losses in Montreal.

"Coach's decision. No more than that," Senators coach Dave Cameron said. "[Anderson]'s a pretty good goaltender."

Anderson has played four games since Jan. 21 when he sustained a bruised right hand. He went 1-2-1 and allowed 14 goals.

"I've been eager to get back in there. I've done everything I can to make sure I'm ready," Anderson said. "That's all you can do. Put in the work and then go out there and play the game."

Anderson was a star in the Senators' first-round win against the Canadiens in 2013.

"I guess it's something to fall back on and kind of put those good memories in your head and kind of replay some of those images to give yourself a bit of a confidence boost," he said. "But what happened in the past is in the past. We have to move forward here. For myself, it's looking forward to the next shot, staying in the moment. Be there for the guys to give them the next save.

Cameron said Hammond's play was reflective of the Senators' performance in Games 1 and 2.

"I thought my team top to bottom could have played better," he said. "The fact that your other goalie is a proven NHL goalie comes into the decision."

After Game 2, Hammond's teammates voiced support for him.

"It's nice to hear," Hammond said. "I fully support the team's decision. It's too crucial of a juncture in the season to not have everyone pulling on the same rope. I support everything that's being done right now.

"Personally, it's disappointing. You want to play every game; every goaltender wants to play every game. But like I said, all you can do at this point is be ready and support everything the team's doing right now.

"There's no point in getting frustrated right now, it's not going to help anything. All I can do is rally with the team and most importantly we need a win tonight. I'm going to do whatever I can to help the team get that win tonight."

Asked to access his performance in the first two games and whether he did enough to help the Senators win, Hammond said: "That's a difficult question for me to answer. You play the game as hard as you can, and ultimately the results are what they are. That's the past now. All we can do is look forward."

Montreal defenseman P.K. Subban said the Canadiens won't change anything because Anderson will be in the Senators' net.

"I don't think so," Subban said. "We've just got to focus on what we can control and that's how we play. During the playoffs, there are going to be lineup changes and different things going on. You just have to focus on the things that have been getting you success, and right now it's just playing our game and making sure that we're sharp.

"It's the playoffs. I expect everyone on their team to feel confident about coming into a hockey game like this. They're at home and they've played really well here all year. We expect their best game of the year tonight. I expect everyone on their roster to feel good."

View More