Senators News: October 20th

-Here are Ottawa’s expected lines:
Milan Michalek-Jason Spezza-Daniel Alfredsson
Nick Foligno-Peter Regin-Chris Neil
Colin Greening-Mika Zibanejad-Erik Condra
Zack Smith-Zenon Konopka-Stephane Da Costa
Erik Karlsson-Filip Kuba
David Rundblad-Chris Phillips
Sergei Gonchar-Jared Cowen

The Ottawa Sun‘s Don Brennan (link) quotes Paul MacLean about Stephane Da Costa‘s struggles, “We’re looking for him to play better defensively. Stephane has always been good with the puck. When we have the puck he’s always been a good player. But defensively he’s had some issues we’ve needed to clear up. He also has to learn to play defence to play in the National  Hockey League. It’s not just all about having the puck all the time. We want to make sure he’s diligent in that department, too. Plus-minus isn’t always a fair stat, but when it gets to a certain number … we want to make sure he’s learning and getting the instruction he needs to be a better defensive payer. Because you can’t play in this league unless you can play defence.”

-In another article (link) Brennan quotes MacLean about the defensive work they did at practice yesterday, “Not to say we fixed it all (Wednesday), but I think we took some strides towards it. Getting started would be a good idea for this team as well. I’m not sure if we have a mental block. Sometimes if you expect things to go badly, they go badly. I’m not sure if we have the mindset that we think we’re going to get scored on first, and then we make sure that happens. That’s one of the things that’s a concern. We’d rather come out (Thursday) and try to dictate the way the game is played at the start, and see how we can play with the lead for more than three minutes.

The Ottawa Citizen‘s Allen Panzeri looks at the Sens efforts to turn things around (link), with Paul MacLean saying, “We’re going to communicate and talk with (the players), and ask what they  think, and (tell them) what we think, and have a free exchange of ideas. We’re still building a foundation for the future. Obviously, right now  it’s a little bit shaky. I’m not second-guessing it. I’m just saying we need to do it better.”  Chris Phillips added, “The skating and the effort are there, but we’re getting pushed off the puck, losing our guys, staples of the game of hockey.”  To me, losing guys in coverage and poor positioning on the penalty kill are the biggest problems for the team.

The Ottawa Sun has an unattributed article (link) where Craig Anderson continues to blame his teammates for his mediocre performance, “You need the guys around you for support. Just like a goal scorer. He needs support from his wingers and guys around him to help him score. Same thing with goaltenders. You’re only as good as the guys in front of you.  I’ll be the first to give credit to my teammates when we play great.  (But) I can’t do it by myself. We’re working hard and we’re going to come out of this.”  I think Anderson would be better off simply saying he needs to be better and leave it at that.

-Joy Lindsay looks at Nikita Filatov‘s start in Binghamton (link), with the winger saying: “And, as I thought when I was coming here, just lots of fun because I knew the guys and it’s perfect group of guys. And I think we had tough times sometimes in the games, but we battled through and our comebacks were amazing. I just think we have to start a little bit better games, and we can be winning games more easy.  When I was going here, they wanted me to shoot the puck more and kind of try to be better without the puck, so that’s the things I’m working for.”  Kurt Kleinendorst added, “He’s a talent. We knew he was a talent. He’s obviously a talent. I like his demeanor. So far, there’s nothing that I’ve seen that is discouraging to me at all. I know that we have to work with him to be competive every single day in practice and every single night in games, and just be a little bit more structured within a system. That’s really what came down from Ottawa, as well. They love him. They know how talented he is. It’s not a matter of making him a better skater or passer or shooter, or anything like that. It’s making sure that we spend every day being consistent, being competitive, and then we just need to help find a little bit more of our system, because our system is very similar to Ottawa’s system. So if we can do that, then I think we’ve accomplished what we’re trying to accomplish.”

Bobby Raymond has been sent down to the ECHL (Florida)

-Here are the Binghamton lines at practice (link) with Robin Lehner expected to start:
Nikita Filatov-Corey Locke-David Dziurzynski
Kaspars Daugavins-Jim O’Brien-Mark Parrish (Downing)
Derek Grant-Pat Cannone-Andre Petersson
Mike Hoffman-Wacey Hamilton-Francis Lessard (Corey Cowick)
Mark Borowiecki-Tim Conboy
Eric Gryba-Patrick Wiercioch
Shaun Heshka-Craig Schira
Bobby Raymond-Josh Godfrey

-The Senators website has posted an article about Binghamton’s season thus far (link).