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Gameday Journal: Game 70 - Bruins vs. Senators

by Craig Medaglia / Ottawa Senators

3:30 PM: Here's some crucial information ahead of tonight's game against the Bruins...

Jersey: Heritage Black

Television: TSN5, RDS2

Radio: TSN 1200, Unique FM 94,5


2:30 PM: And here's a look at tonight's projected line-ups...

Click to enlarge

BRUINS

Forwards

Brad Marchand – Patrice Bergeron – Reilly Smith

Milan Lucic – Ryan Spooner – David Pastrnak

Chris Kelly – Carl Soderberg – Loui Eriksson

Daniel Paille – Gregory Campbell – Max Talbot

Defence

Zdeno Chara – Dougie Hamilton

Torey Krug – Adam McQuaid

Dennis Seidenberg – Matt Bartkowski

Goaltenders

Tuukka Rask

Niklas Svedberg

Scratched: Jeremy Smith, Brian Ferlin


1:45 PM: Get the full rundown on tonight's game against the Boston Bruins with Sens TV's Pre-Game Report...


12:30 PM: Sens head coach Dave Cameron spoke with the media earlier today and thanks to Sens TV you can watch the whole thing...

Changes to tonight's line-up:

On defence. Gryba (in), Cowen (out).

On if Mark Borowiecki will move back to the left side:

Yes.

On the team's mood:

Excited.

On if coaches get excited for these game as well:

Very much.

On if the team seems more relaxed facing the Bruins again:

No. It's part of the learning curve, you have to go through it. You can't practice pressure. Pressure's good, you have to learn to deal with it to be good and it's a chance for us to get used to it.


Andrew Hammond had a LARGE contingent of media waiting to talk to him this morning. Here's what the Hamburglar had to say ahead of tonight's game against Boston...


And finally, here are some pre-game comments from Kyle Turris courtesy of Sens TV...


12:00 PM: We caught up with Sens rookie Curtis Lazar after the team's morning skate to talk about tonight's game against Boston...

On learning from last week's game:

Just keep doing what we're doing. We've got a good thing going right now and if you look at last week's game against Boston, Tuukka Rask was the difference. We had good chances but ultimately they came in and played the perfect road game. They got their opportunities and they capitalized. We just have to go at them. If we can pressure their D and have them turnover pucks and then work the puck around their zone we're going to be successful.

On the atmosphere surrounding these games:

It's awesome. The story of us inching our way back into the playoff picture is cool to be a part of the hunt. Having said that, there's still a lot of work to be done and we're on the outside looking in but just the buzz around the city and the media attention it's awesome. We feed off our fanbase and every game we go out there and give it our all.

On playing with Condra and Pageau:

It's nice having set lines. You can really build that chemistry and learn where each other are going to be on the ice. We're a hard working line that's always moving our feet and when we're on the forecheck, we're hard on pucks and look to make every shift difficult on their D. We should probably have a few more goals (laughs) but that's the cool thing about it. We just need to keep doing what we're doing. If we can play solid defensively it will lead to more ice time for us which should hopefully translate into more scoring chances.

On the Hamburglar:

I mean, what can you say about the Hamburglar? He stole the show. The thing about him is that he's actually a great guy. He's laid back and so humble about everything. It's crazy that 10,000 fans will be getting Hamburglar masks tonight. It's not only the buzz around the city about him but it's a league-wide thing. It's a great story and he's standing on his head for us.


11:30 AM: A quick line-up note to pass along from the coach via our Twitter...


10:45 AM: Great crowd for today's morning skate as the team preps for the Bruins tonight...


9:45 AM: From yesterday, Sens head coach Dave Cameron spoke to the media about the team's preparations for tonight's game...

On if the team is ready to face Boston:

Not yet. But we will be by the end of the day (yesterday).

Reflecting back on last Tuesday's game against the Bruins:

Didn't bury our chances. Very winnable game. Had some real good looks, had some posts and if we finish those chances we win the game.

On preparing so that those mistakes don't happen again:

You don't. You just go over it and that's why you play the game. If you are getting the chances...you live and die with it. We really like our chances for versus chances against. That's the game of hockey.

On dealing with the nerves that go along with a big game:

You can't guard from it. You have to go through it and that's how your team gets better. You can't practice pressure, you have to play it. And we've seen it once. Will their be pressure tomorrow? Of course there will be. It's a big game for both teams. Boston will feel pressure too.

On riding the team's streak:

That's why everyday you put in the work. That's why it's an everyday thing. That's why you have to learn to balance the ebbs and the flows, the luck and the bad luck. And the best way you do that is focus on a game at a time and put in your work. Do your work and then, like I said earlier, sometimes post and in and sometimes post and out. You can't control that. All you can control is the work you put in everyday. It's the National Hockey League, there's good teams, good players...there's luck. There's a whole lot of factors that go in but you only control some of those factors and that's what you spend your time and energy on.

On the mental fatigue that comes along with a long winning streak:

No. Winning never wears you down but a big challenge for any coach or any team is the length of the season. It's huge. It's such a contact sport, such a fast sport, you watch and there's no room out there, it's physical, guy's are blocking shots. The length of the season is something that we'll address two weeks after the season's over because the summer will play a big part on how you go through your year in terms of your fitness level coming in. I guess probably the best analogy for the fitness level is that I always tell my players that the summer's your gas tank and you have to fill it because this time of year you're draining it and you can't fill it. You're just playing too many games.


7:45 AM: The Senators are looking to close the gap tonight against the 8th place Boston Bruins at Canadian Tire Centre. Puck drop is set for 7:30 p.m.

The Sens have rattled off 4 straight wins since the last time they faced the Bruins with their most recent victory coming on Tuesday night in Carolina. Patrick Wiercioch and Mark Stone's goals helped the Senators earn a 2-1 overtime win against the Hurricanes. Andrew Hammond continued his lights out play and improved his record to 11-0-1 by making 35 saves to earn the decision. The Sens record currently sits at 34-24-11 through 69 games this season and they sit in 9th place in the Eastern Conference just 4 points back of the Boston Bruins for the final wildcard playoff spot and hold a game in hand.

The Bruins travel to Ottawa after a 2-1 shootout loss to the Buffalo Sabres this past Tuesday night in Boston. Loui Eriksson scored the lone goal for the Bruins while Niklas Svedberg stopped 23 of 24 in defeat. As mentioned above, Boston currently sits just 4 points ahead of the red hot Senators with a record of 36-23-11.

This is their fifth and final meeting of the season with the Sens and Bruins splitting the first four games to date. In their most recent match-up just last week, Boston defeated Ottawa 3-1 on the back of a 40 save performance by Tuukka Rask. Catch the full highlights from that game here...

The Sens are getting set 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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