The Sens were back on the practice ice on Thursday morning after Sens Skills took place on Wednesday night. Paul MacLean offered his thoughts and updates on the team after the skate.
Here's what he had to say...
On if Craig Anderson will be with the team this weekend:
Oh yeah, I expect him to be around. He still has some discomfort. He's still being evaluated, we're going to make a decision I believe later today or tomorrow morning if we need to bring someone to back up just in case but he still has some discomfort so, again, we're going to be patient and evaluate it later... From the collision and the shot and ongoing whatever, we anticipate he's going to be here for the weekend but whether or not we make him available for the game, like I said, we're going to make that decision later today or tomorrow morning.
On the four days to work and rest:
Well we had nine days after the break to work on things too, we had a good practice block there. This is our next practice block so we're trying to use it to, again, work on and address things we need to get better at and yeah, we need to win our next game but we can't look at back here. We need to look at every day and how do we get better every day.
Well he got through the practice and he was a full participant. That is a very positive sign. We're going to be here tomorrow, we don't have to make a final decision until Saturday morning on whether or not he's able to play but the only issue he has is whether or not he can get the helmet on and whether there's any discomfort from that. It didn't seem like he left practice or anything today but right now we're going to make the decision on Saturday and we anticipate he'll be available to play.
On Zibanejad's hardest shot:
I guess Mika has to shoot the puck, he can't hide anymore. We always thought he could shoot it but he better not be passing it now.
On Zibanejad's scoring:
I think Mika's like everybody else, you're going to go through some cycles. With the addition of Hemsky we made some adjustments in the lines so his ice time has gone down a little bit but, again, he still plays on that second power play unit and we're not worried. He has been playing fine for us and we know it's going to go in the net for him again.
On Zibanejad and Hoffman playing together:
I think they did earlier in the year, they played together when Mika was there. We felt that we would put Hoff there and put Clarke back with Turris and Bobby which should give us four pretty solid lines that can play 200 feet and play the game the right way.
On putting the Turris line back together:
We feel that they're going to be able to (re-create their production) and, again, everyone goes through cycles and they've been pretty consistent for us. We need them to get back playing these last 18 games. We need everybody at their best.
On the strength of the lineup:
We're willing to find out, we're still searching for our best team but right now when you look at it on paper it looks like our best team. But we had that team play out West and it played .500. Is that our best team? We're still searching.
On drills without sticks in practice:
What you're trying to accomplish is making them realize that if you stay on your feet and stay between your guy and the net, see how many chances they can get if you don't have a stick. You don't have to be chasing them around but it gives them a little better concept in their mind that they can relax a little bit better and play defence as opposed to feeling a sense of urgency and start that chase if you have that confidence to skate and stay in the middle of the rink, stay between your guy. If the puck never gets to the net you're playing well. That was the idea of it today was to try and give them confidence and say the puck didn't get to the net very often. That's what we were trying to accomplish.
On players becoming timid after scary incidents like Ceci's:
It's like any situation you've been in and there has been an injury, the first time you get back in there there's some hesitancy. In our game it's actually quite rare, you've just got to get out there and play.
On if the team's mindset is in the right place:
Well I think they had a good time last night, they really enjoyed the skills competition last night so they came back today with a lot of energy and zip. Going into the weekend we do. We'll see when we get to the rink for the game.
On playing in Montreal:
I think it's a great place to play. Any time you can play there the atmosphere can really get you energized and I know I look forward to it and I believe our team does too.
|More from Inside the Senate:|