For fans of the Ottawa Senators, the wait leading up to the start of the new NHL season has probably seemed unusually long.
The season will already be three days old and 14 games will have been played before the Sens hit the ice for the first time in 2013/2014. But once the puck drops on a new season, the action will be fast and furious for Ottawa as they open with a six game road trip, including a back to back in Buffalo and Toronto to start the season.
With a couple days of practice under their belt, it looks as though Head Coach Paul MacLean has almost settled on a line up for the season opening game against the Sabres. And while there's a chance Buffalo dresses John Scott, so far Paul MacLean seems to be leaning towards leaving his enforcer on the sidelines.
And that's good news for Stephane Da Costa because it means he would find his way into the line up, centreing a line between Zack Smith and Chris Neil. Not sure how effective that combination can be but it's certainly a nice reward for Da Costa after a really strong training camp and preseason.
The other decision for MacLean is on the back end, as he'll have to decide between Joe Corvo and Eric Gryba as the 6th defenceman. Corvo plays the power play while Gryba can be effective on the penalty kill.
So far it seems like MacLean is leaning towards dressing Corvo but that could change over the next 24 hours or so. Here is how the Sens have lined up during the last two days of practice.
The Sens are on the ice for practice at 11:00 AM this morning so we'll keep an eye out for any changes to the line combinations or defence pairings.
One. More. Sleep.