At practice yesterday, it almost looked like Paul MacLean had decided to hit the “reset button” on the season.
The Senators have stumbled out of the gates, posting a 4-6-2 record through their first twelve games but they’ll look to right the ship with a couple home games this weekend. First up- John Tavares, the newly acquired Tomas Vanek and the rest of the New York Islanders.
Frustrated with the way his team has performed in the early going, MacLean decided that a significant shift of the lines was in order.
The trio of MacArthur-Turris-Ryan, the Senators best line through the first month, was all that remained intact. Spezza had new wingers in Conacher and Neil. Bizarre. Zack Smith seems to be the second line centre, skating with Michalek and Zibanejad. OK. And on defence, Chris Phillips was paired with Erik Karlsson. Mhmm.
Desperate times call for desperate measures, I suppose. We’ll see if those line combinations stick to start tonight’s game and more importantly, how long they stick for. Here is how the Sens were lined up at yesterday’s practice.
Robin Lehner gets the start in the Ottawa goal. Puck drop is scheduled for just after 7:30 PM and there are still plenty of tickets if anyone is interested in ya know, attending a hockey game.
The Daily Chirp- Back in 2005, when the Senators pulled the trigger on the Dany Heatley trade, the hockey world was floored. It was a deal that came out of nowhere for everyone. Well except those that were following the mysterious Chara03 on Sportsnet Forums. Anyway, the two teams had talked trade for a couple weeks before the infamous Heatley for Hossa swap and apparently, briefly discussed the possibility of Ilya Kovalchuk before settling on Heatley.