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Coach MacLean post-practice - 12.15.2013

by Chris Lund / Ottawa Senators

The Sens hit the practice ice at the Bell Sensplex on Sunday afternoon to prepare for the St. Louis Blues on Monday night. Head coach Paul MacLean met with the media after the skate to pass along his thoughts.

Here's what he had to say...

On Methot/Cowen:

We have Cowen eligible and Methot practiced today. We'll wait until tomorrow to see how he got through today but if there's no reccuring things we'll make decisions based on that tomorrow.

On their potential returns helping:

It should, they've both been top four defencemen for us so it should certainly help our team going forward.

On Cowen's game pre-suspension:

I thought it was coming around. We felt his game was getting better and improving and can still improve but we really felt that he was starting to come on. I thought his practices he has had in the last couple days have been very good as well. He has been physical in them, skating well and handling the puck better so we're hopeful that when he gets back in there he'll continue to grow.

On Ceci's play:

I thought he has played very well for us. We'd like to give him more consideration to stick around but we'll have to go through those bingo balls when we get to them and make sure everyone is ready to go and then we'll make a decision.

On if they can keep him as an emergency recall:

You'd have to do a paper move and regularly recall him but we have lots of space under the cap and a roster spot so that's not an issue. It's whether or not we're going to play him enough to justify keeping him here.

On avoiding forced plays against LA/St. Louis:

I think it's critical to stay that way because that's the way they play. The LA Kings proved last night that they basically played the same way from the beginning of the game to the finish of the game much like the Boston Bruins do. They do the same thing over and over and over again and it's not real pretty and it's not real flashy but it certainly wins a lot of hockey games and I thought they were, for most of the game, a better team than we were. Now, we didn't get off to a good start to give ourselves a chance, but when the game was 3-2 I thought they stuck to it better than we did and got the goals they needed to put the game away.

On Saturday as a measuring stick:

I think we're below them, I don't think there's any question. They're an elite calibre team, I think that's something we're working towards. Our structure and our game isn't at the level or the consistency, I should say, of theirs.

On if they could beat the Kings:

I think at some point yeah, we'll be able to beat them. Is it tomorrow night? I'm not sure when that's going to be. We still need to be better than we have been through 34 games this year to expect to beat teams like that consistently.

On tomorrow's starter:

We're going to wait, I'm still pondering that…I haven't talked to Rick Wamsley yet, we've been doing a lot of stuff here today with getting stuff organized for St. Louis. We just haven't taken the time to sit down and discuss it. We'll do that before we leave today, we just don't have that decision right now.

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