Josh Norris talks centering a top line versus Vancouver, details on tonight's Ottawa Senators Foundation Telethon and more before our 7:30 p.m. start at Canadian Tire Centre against the Canucks.
With both Anthony Duclair and Colin White sidelined with injuries, the Sens have recalled centre Josh Norris from Belleville to help fill the gap down the middle. Norris, who made his NHL debut last weekend against the Montreal Canadiens, found himself between a pair of familiar faces at this morning's skate in long-time friend Brady Tkachuk and Bobby Ryan who he admitted was one of the players he grew up watching.
"I was just getting changed in the locker room and Bobby came in and mentioned that I'd be on a line with him and Brady this morning," Norris said. "As an American kid growing up you watch guys like Bobby and he's been such a good player for such a long time. If those lines stick for tonight, I'm just going to try and enjoy the opportunity and have some fun between two really good wingers."
Video: OTT vs. VAN | Players Pre-game
Another young forward will also see an opportunity in the top 6 tonight as Rudolfs Balcers is expected to skate on a line with Chris Tierney and Connor Brown. Balcers' offensive game has really come into it's own in Belleville this season and he's hoping the chance to play alongside some of the team's top scorers will allow him to showcase that development at the NHL level tonight.
"Tierney is a smart player who can make plays and dish the puck and Brown is one of the hardest workers on the team," he said of his linemates for this evening. "I'm just going to try to fit in with them and work as hard as they do. Hopefully we can generate some offence and help the team win tonight."
Here's how the forward lines and defence pairings looked at this morning's skate:
Tkachuk - Norris - Ryan
Balcers - Tierney - Brown
Paul - Anisimov - Hawryluk
Boedker - Peca - Sabourin
Chabot - Hainsey
Reilly - Zaitsev
Englund - Jaros
Ottawa Senators Foundation Telethon
The Ottawa Senators Foundation Telethon, powered by Mitel, will air on TSN5 prior to and during tonight's game against the Canucks with the telethon portion of the broadcast set to start one hour before puck drop at 6:30 p.m.
The Telethon will introduce fans and viewers to some of the people who have been impacted by the community work of the Ottawa Senators Hockey Club and it's Foundation. The broadcast will highlight four separate stories from The Sens Power Plays Program, the Capital City Condors, the Youth Services Bureau's Youth Hub and Roger Neilson House.
Here's how you can donate to the Ottawa Senators Foundation Telethon:
- PHONE: 1-844-8-GO-SENS (846-7367)
- ONLINE: Click here to donate
- TEXT: Text GOSENS to 45678 for a $20 donation or SENS to 45678 for a $10 donation
These teams last met in Vancouver back on Dec. 3rd where the home side earned a 5-2 win on the night the Canucks retired Alex Burrows' #14. The Sens found themselves in a hole quickly and trailed the Canucks 4-0 at the first intermission and goals from Pageau and Ennis weren't enough to chip away at Vancouver's lead over the final two periods.
"We probably had more chances offensively than we've had in a month tonight but unfortunately we weren't as good defensively, and that's sometimes what happens," said Smith post-game. "You concentrate on one thing and then another thing goes. We have to play defense in order to have success with this team."
Full highlights from that game below...
Video: OTT Recap: Pageau, Ennis score in 5-2 loss
Where to watch
It's a 7:30 p.m. start at Canadian Tire Centre and here's all the ways you can catch the Sens and Canucks tonight...
BROADCAST: TSN5, RDS2
RADIO: TSN 1200, 94,5 Unique FM