Game Day Thread — Habs Vs Senators

Montreal Cacs (19-18-3) Vs Ottawa Senators (19-15-4) @ Scotiabank Place, 7:30pm ET Television: Rogers Sportsnet
The parallels that can be drawn between tonight’s game against the Montreal Cacs and James Cameron’s Avatar are uncanny. Both feature blue leading characters, the Navi (Avatar) and the Smurfs (Cacs). Between Ottawa’s offensive injuries and Jacques Martin’s passive trapping style, a low scoring affair is about as contrived as the latest Hollywood blockbuster’s plot. Without the luxury of 3-D or vibrant fluourescent colours to pique your interest, I’m hoping I don’t come away from tonight’s 3-hour affair thinking that I wasted my evening…again.
As is the norm on a Senators game day, here’s my prediction that ran as part of James Gordon’s prediction panel

In retrospect, even though they were without Alfie and Spezza, Ottawa’s 3-2 shootout victory over the Northeast Division leading Buffalo Sabres shouldn’t have been that surprising. Ottawa was playing a team that they have historically had success against and Buffalo has struggled offensively this year. When you factor in the fact that Ottawa was due for a bit of a bounce back game following their 8-2 loss to the Penguins, the recipe for victory should have been more transparent. That being said, I expect a bit of a letdown tonight and will pick the Canadiens since they are on a 4-game winning streak and will dress a lineup that features the hot-handed Jaroslav Halak and a returning Roman Hamrlik and Brian Gionta.

Lineup: Shannon-Fisher-Kovalev; Michalek-Regin-Neil; Ruutu-Kelly-Cheechoo; Keller-Winchester-Donovan; and Pascal Leclaire will make his third straight start for the Senators.

Alfredsson’s No Dominator

After the Bryden bankruptcy situation in 2003 in which Alfie deferred salary so that the Senators could afford to pay their players, it’s not like the Senators organization needed any more affirmation that Alfie’s a team player first. Well, here’s another quote from the captain regarding whether or not he’ll attend the Olympics if he’s not healthy…

“It’s not going to be a decision where if I’m 50/50 I’ll go anyway. I’m only going to go if I feel I can play 100% and help the team. I’m sure they don’t want me to go, either, if I’m not playing games (for Ottawa) and playing fully before. I don’t see that being an issue at all.”

It’s unjust how Hasek has a ring and a gold medal.

Trouble At the Mellon Arena

I received an interesting email from a Penguins fan in Pittsburgh who had this to say,

Hi guys. I am a season ticket holder for the Pittsburgh Penguins. On the Wednesday, Dec 23rd Sens at Pens game at Melllon Arena, one of your faithful was unjustly ejected from the game after doing absolutly nothing wrong. I know it’s a 10,000,000 to 1 shot of finding this guy. But if I do find him ( I have a photo of him), I want to offer him free tickets to the next Pens versus Sens game in Pittsburgh. I know its a longshot but any help from you will be appreciated. Thanks and merry Christmas.

If anyone knows who was thrown out, please fire us an email and we’ll put you in touch with this Penguins fan. Thanks.