Those who watch the Sens play night in and night out have no doubt been impressed with the work of Erik Condra
The 26 year old has been a shining example of the brand of hockey this team wants to play each game. A smart player who competes in all three zones and creates havoc around the opposing crease, Condra has not only emerged as a solid two-way player, but one who is a catalyst for puck possession by forcing turnovers and handling himself well in corners.
The key to his game is understanding where to be on the ice and what to do when you get the puck.
"I think I just try to be smart about the game and know where to be defensively and it ends up leading to my offensive chances. A big part of it is just getting the puck out of your zone and once it's out of your zone you don't have to play defence as much."
Many will argue that the Sens were the better team the last time they played the Maple Leafs. They tested Toronto offensively and played sound defence despite integrating three new players into the lineup. One sided "puck luck" led to Toronto goals off of odd bounces, and kept the puck of the Leafs net.
If the Sens can pot a couple of goals, it stands to reason that they should fare better at home. The question is how they go about it.
"We just need to go from what we're doing right now. I think last game we had just lost a few guys and we were at a low point. We've got some young guys scoring now and we're looking to keep that going and it's goals by committee for the rest of us."
It goes without saying at this point that many around the league have written off the Sens, particularly after the latest injuries to Erik Karlsson and Craig Anderson. During a shortened season where there is no room for error, missing your top centre (Jason Spezza), defenceman and goaltender is a hat trick no team dreams of.
With the pressure off, in many ways, the Sens are channeling the low expectations of others motivation and wins.
"A little bit, yeah. I think that low point was in Pittsburgh after Karl (Erik Karlsson) went down but we regrouped and we know who we are. We have a lot of young guys but we're going to work hard and do all the right things to win games."