The Sens hit the ice at Canadian Tire Centre this morning for their final full workday before Wednesday night's game against the Toronto Maple Leafs. As a friendly reminder, please keep in mind that Wednesday's game will get going at 7 p.m. as it is a national broadcast.
Players and coaches spoke with the media after Tuesday's skate. Here's a sampling of what they had to say...
Senators head coach Paul MacLean offered his thoughts after Tuesday's Sens practice. Here's what he had to say...
On Marc Methot:
He skated a little longer today apparently so that's progress. Again, patience is the number one thing to have but there is progress.
On if the team will take him on the next road trip:
I have no idea. We're still going to be patient so we'll see how he progresses and if that warrants that he be with us and work with us he will, otherwise he'll stay here. Right now we're not prepared to make that decision.
On if the lineup will change:
I think we're still evaluating the opponent, they play tonight and we'll further evaluate it tonight and tomorrow morning and make a final decision then.
On getting Cowen back into the lineup to avoid rust:
That's been the case and it's the same with Colin Greening and Erik Condra. We want to keep everybody involved and everybody playing until we make a final determination of the best roster and that's the one we're going to go with. We haven't got to that point yet. We want to make sure nobody stays out too too long but, at the same time, we want to make sure we're playing the best players.
On tomorrow's starting goalie:
We'll certainly have one, one of the two will be in the net. We're going to take on some evaluation to make that decision for sure tomorrow.
On the solid play of Anderson and Lehner:
It's good, they've both played well for us and it's what our team needs. We're trying to make we give both of them every opportunity to play and give both of them action.
On the Toronto rivalry changing without Orr and McLaren:
It's still the Leafs and it's still their Senators and somebody else will take their place, it seems. It used to be Sundin and Alfredsson and then it went to someone else. Someone else will step up, it's a healthy rivalry and we have tons of respect for what they do. We'll have to be ready. They've, to this point, been better than us. We won the last one at the end of last year so we'll see if we can get on a streak... We're not too too worried about the past, we're more worried about what they do tonight and how we can do things tomorrow. Both teams have made subtle changes to their group, whether it's by personnel or how they have to play. I haven't watched them to this point so it'll be interesting to see what they're doing.
He has been consistent which is what we want to see most of all and he has been at a high level. We just want to make sure and monitor if he can sustain it. That's the most important thing and the hardest thing is to be a consistent player. To this point through training camp and from last year he has been consistent.
On the emotions of the game changing preparations:
That usually takes care of itself. Those types of games, the intensity is usually there. We just have to make sure we're prepared and we're not overdoing it. We just have to make sure we're ready to play.
On if the Leafs are the biggest opponent on the calendar:
Every game is the biggest game of the year, the one you're playing. Other games take a different significance but I would say no. Every game is important to us. You can't look past an opponent for another one. We just have to make sure we're ready. Like I said, we can't be overhyped for an opponent because it's a rival. We've got to make sure that we're ready to play our game consistently.
On if there's an advantage to resting for an opponent playing back-to-back:
Back-to-backs are difficult games if you're the team that's back-to-back, but if the team that's sitting here waiting doesn't prepare properly and doesn't come out ready to play, it can be a frustrating night. It's not so much about them, it's about us and we have to make sure we're here, we're prepared, we're not overhyped, but we're ready to play and get off to a good start to keep some momentum.
Senators forward Alex Chiasson spoke with media after practice. Here's what he had to say...
On the play of his line:
I think it's a little bit frustrating, we're trying to produce but it feels like the chances we have aren't going in. We're obviously not producing enough for the team. At the same time, you've just got to stay positive and we've got to stick to what we do well. We've talked here the last couple of days and we've got to build on the good things we've done the last couple games. It's going to go sooner rather than later with the talent on this line, it's just a matter of time before we start clicking. Let's just hope it happens tomorrow night.
On getting his first goal out of the way early:
Obviously it was nice to get that out of the way but at the same time I think you're always looking for a little more. There have been a few chances here the last couple of games that I'd like back, but this is what happens over a season. I've just got to stick with it, stay positive and it'll be good sooner rather than later.
On the small number of games they've had:
It's not to the point of being worried, it's to the point of making a couple of changes and adjusting to each other. It's not easy to play with three righties on the same line, I don't think I've played with three guys who shoot from the same side so we're trying to stay on one side of the ice most of the time. Guys are positive, Mika would obviously like to get a couple in and I think we've had a couple good practices here. We've just got to build on it.
On his first game vs. Toronto with the Sens:
I've heard a lot of good things about that. Every game against Canadian teams, I imagine, are big games. At the same time, the success of our line is trying to contribute to the success of our team. That's the main thing we're really focused on is trying to help the team win. Obviously you put a little bit more pressure on yourself to produce more.