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Gameday Journal: Game 34 - Capitals vs. Senators

by Craig Medaglia / Ottawa Senators

6:00 PM: Get off my plane...


3:30 PM: Get the full rundown on tonight's game courtesy of Sens TV and the Pre-Game Report...


2:45 PM: From NHL.com (with a little tweaking on our end), here are tonight's projected starting lineups for the Sens and Caps...

SENATORS

Clarke MacArthur - Kyle Turris - Mark Stone

Mike Hoffman - Mika Zibanejad - Bobby Ryan

Colin Greening - David Legwand - Erik Condra

Milan Michalek - Jean-Gabriel Pageau - Alex Chiasson

Patrick Wiercioch - Erik Karlsson

Jared Cowen - Cody Ceci

Mark Borowiecki - Eric Gryba

Craig Anderson

Robin Lehner

Scratched: Chris Phillips

Injured: Zack Smith (wrist), Chris Neil (knee), Marc Methot (back)

CAPITALS

Alex Ovechkin - Nicklas Backstrom - Tom Wilson

Brooks Laich - Eric Fehr - Joel Ward

Marcus Johansson - Evgeny Kuznetsov - Troy Brouwer

Jason Chimera - Michael Latta - Jay Beagle

Brooks Orpik - John Carlson

Karl Alzner - Matt Niskanen

Jack Hillen - Mike Green

Braden Holtby

Justin Peters

Scratched: Andre Burakovsky, Nate Schmidt

Injured: Aaron Volpatti (upper body), Dmitry Orlov (wrist), John Erskine (neck surgery)


1:45 PM: Sens head coach Dave Cameron and winger Clarke MacArthur each spoke with the media today after the team's morning skate. Here's what they had to say...

Changes to tonight's lineup:

Andy's in net. Wiercioch is in. Philly's out.

Expectations for Wiercioch:

A good game. That's what we expect from everybody and to just play our system. To make good decisions with or without the puck.

On changes that need to be made after Saturday's loss to Montreal:

We got away from trusting our system. We just have to play our system.

On his thoughts from the Montreal game:

Too much individual play, too many broken plays, no real pace...just too scattered so the guy with the puck generally has no support and good teams just corner that guy, take the puck and come the other way and you end up playing too much in your own end.

On the turning point in that game:

The turning point in the game for me was that we got nothing from our two powerplays in the third. We got no momentum, we got no goal. It's a 2-1 game and Chase (Chiasson) has a puck all alone in front and it just hops on him. If we score there, we get a lift but that's the fine line.

On motivating the team for tonight's game:

I've said all along that I think the team has worked really hard. We've had to overwork sometimes defensively because we were sloppy and that but I have no qualms with this team's work ethic.

Secret to the recent success against Washington:

Obviously we've played some pretty good hockey against them and probably we caught them at different times, whether it was injuries or schedule and stuff like that. It's a funny game that way some times, you play teams and things just seem to go your way and that just seems to be the nature of the sport. Real good club, new coach in so things will be a little bit different and we're going to have to be on top of our game tonight.

On the Capitals under Barry Trotz:

Actually, I haven't seen a lot of them but that's Barry's history. He's coming over and that's not going to change. Most of us have a philosophy and we stick to it and we tweak it. Obviously with the offensive guys they have I'm sure he's going to free them up a little bit. He's probably like the rest of us: just trying to find some balance.


11:30 AM: Meanwhile at the Verizon Center...

#Sens morning skate is underway here in Washington, DC.

A photo posted by Ottawa Senators (@nhlsenators) on


11:15 AM: Prior to today's morning skate...


9:30 AM: The Ottawa Senators return to action tonight at the Verizon Center in Washington where they'll take on the Capitals. Puck drop is set for 7:00 p.m.

After earning points in 5 of their last 6 games, the Senators fell to the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday night by a 4-1 score. Erik Condra tallied the lone goal for the Senators while Robin Lehner made 25 stops in defeat. The Sens currently sit 11th in the Eastern Conference with a record of 14-13-6.

The Capitals have been on a bit of a roll recently posting a record of 6-2-2 in their last 10 games. On Saturday night, Washington blanked the Devils 4-0 in New Jersey. Mike Green, Nicklas Backstrom (x2) and Alex Ovechkin all scored for Washington while Braden Holtby turned aside all 21 shots he faced to earn the shutout victory.

The Sens will hit the ice for their morning skate today and I'll have plenty of updates to follow including, but not limited to, lineup changes, players' thoughts, Sens TV videos, Instagram goodness and more.

Stay tuned!

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