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Coach MacLean post-practice - 1.7.2014

by Chris Lund / Ottawa Senators

The Sens are in Colorado today preparing to take on the Avalanche on Wednesday night. Head coach Paul MacLean offered his thoughts and a series of updates on the team ahead of tomorrow night's game.

Here's what he had to say...

On the practice day:

Well I think we have to get going because it's a little cold out today, but I thought it was another — right now in our schedule on this trip we have a real good opportunity to practice and get in some quality practice time and we're going to really try to take advantage of that while we have the chance. Through December we didn't have a whole lot of practice time so we're trying to take advantage of that.

On the practice goals:

We're trying to, again, find our best team and our best group. With Jason coming back into the lineup we want to try and find the right mix for him and for us, especially on the power play where there's a number of people that have the ability to play there. We just need to sort it out.

On if they are hesitant to use four forwards on the PP:

Not in practice, it might be a little harder when the game starts. We've done that earlier in the season and we could say it worked or didn't work, we went away from it again, but at the same time we have quality players and we have to try to get them on the ice and give them an opportunity to succeed.

On Michalek and Karlsson going to the Olympics:

It's a great credit to them obviously when you get picked for those teams, it's quite an honour to represent your country and it's difficult to do, a lot of really good players get left off of those teams as well. We're very pleased for them that they're going to get that opportunity to represent their countries. It's very well deserved.

On if the rest for the remaining roster will help:

Right now that's what we have to deal with so that is going to be good for our group. We had the potential of maybe having five or six guys go and only have two go so the guys that are here are going to have a good opportunity. We have a push here of I believe it's 15 more games before the break starts and that's going to be an important stretch for us, but also coming back is going to be important and having everybody rested and ready to go should help us.

On Chris Neil:

He won't play tomorrow for sure but today is his first real practice with the team, it was good that he was out there for the whole thing and participated in it. That's positive, I don't think tomorrow is any chance of that (playing) but we'll look down the road during this trip.

On tomorrow's roster:

I think we have a different configuration today, but Craig is going to be the goalie. As far as the defence and forward lines, we're going to kick that around a little bit.

On Colorado:

They've played well, they've been a pretty consistent team. They're very hard working, their forwards are very talented up front and they've been playing a pretty good team game from everything I've seen, they've been physical and they're going to be difficult. It's a good opportunity for us.

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