A day ahead of their preseason rematch with the Toronto Maple Leafs, the Ottawa Senators were missing a couple of key players that missed significant time last season.
Both Michalek and Anderson were absent from today’s practice but MacLean insists that neither absence is anything to worry about and that both players should be fine, dropping the “maintenance day” term for the first time this season. With Michalek sitting out today’s practice, Mika Zibanejad was moved to the top line with Jason Spezza and Bobby Ryan.
After breaking into two groups over the weekend, the Sens are now down to 28 players on their official training camp roster. The second group, led by Binghamton bench boss Luke Richardson, will stick around at Sens camp and will still be used during the remaining preseason games.
With Michalek gone, MacLean had to hit the shuffle button on his forward line combinations a little bit. Zack Smith was back at the centre ice position while Zibanejad found himself back on the wing.
Here is how MacLean lined them up today
Absent- Eric Gryba, Milan Michalek, Craig Anderson
With Anderson nursing whatever it is he’s nursing (let’s hope not ankle), Robin Lehner is expected to start against the Leafs tomorrow night.
- Mentioned this on the site a couple days back but it’s interesting to see that ESPN the Magazine has ranked the Ottawa Senators as the 9th best franchise in professional sports and the top team in all of Canada. ESPN’s annual rankings take in to account a variety of elements which can be found in more detail here. This ranking is particularly interesting when you consider the fact that Eugene Melnyk suggests the team as lost $94 mil over the last ten years.
- Another good interview with Sens Head Coach Paul MacLean on Team 1200 this morning. Had a lot to say about the line up decisions he’ll have to make prior to the start of the season and not so surprisingly, had a lot of good things to say about Jean Gabriel Pageau. Will include the link to the interview when it is made available.