Against all the odds

Envers et contre tous

One for all, all for one.

No, the Ottawa Senators will not use this motto, popularized in the book by Alexandre Dumas, The Three musketeers, this season.

But for a club that has traded its captain and player of the franchise, Erik Karlsson, on the first day of training camp, the concept applies well then they will need to be more united than ever to compensate for this big loss came after a season 2017-2018 disastrous, both on and off the ice.

The swiss franc shooter Mike Hoffman can also be found under other skies, in Florida, after an episode of sordid where his fiancee has been accused of bullying by the wife of Karlsson, who made his debut with the San Jose Sharks late Wednesday night.

The expectations for the training, which was officially declared in the reconstruction this fall, and who will field five players of 21 years or less to begin the campaign, of course, are not high. Several observers they predict a last place in the standings, which would be a disaster, since the Senators have surrendered their first pick overall of 2019 to the Colorado Avalanche.

“We need to have a little poo on the heart after last season, that’s for sure, said Wednesday the center Matt Duchene, acquired in this famous exchange with the Avalanche last year. It is exciting to have a chance to show people that they are wrong about us. One only has to follow what Vegas has done in the last year. No need to go further than that. What they did was incredible (to reach the final). I know that it is far from it, but at this time last year, these guys said, ‘We are going to show everyone what we can do’. That should be our attitude, we have a little bit of everything to do damage. We will see how this goes. “

Envers et contre tous

Named assistant captain standing of the team at the same time as Duchene, Mark Stone has made a pause when he was asked if this team could cause a surprise. “Yes, I don’t see why not. The people of the media have already buried, but we still have a chance to put our engine on. I think everyone starts with a record of 0-0, so we’re excited to start to see what we have in this locker room. We have young players who bring a ton of excitement, speed and skill, ” he said.

These are young recruits of 19 year old Brady Tkachuk and Alex Formenton, defender Maxime Lajoie and forward Colin White. What’s more, the Senators need to integrate the former Sharks Mikkel Boedker, Chris Tierney and Dylan DeMelo in their training. It’s been a lot of new comers.

Head coach Guy Boucher had said at the beginning of his first season at the helm of the team, crowned by his participation in the final Is in may 2016, that it would take approximately six weeks for his team to learn the game system. While he intends to deploy one that will be much more aggressive in failure before, saw it over skaters fast, he think it will take more time this time.

For Boucher, it is not a question of using forecasts of “experts” to motivate his troops, however.

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Groin injury for Tkachuk

The first choice Brady Tkachuk has not skated with his teammates Wednesday at their last practice before the start of the regular season and during the latter, the gm Pierre Dorion announced that he wouldn’t play against the Blackhawks Thursday because of a ” slight pulled muscle in the groin “.

“We hope he can play Saturday (in Toronto). It is disappointing for him, but he has a long career ahead of him and he must be smart, for the moment, ” said Guy Boucher. In his absence, rookie Colin White will play in the center of the second trio, in between Zack Smith and Mark Stone. Boucher has confirmed that Maxime Lajoie will play his first career game in the NHL, while Ben Harpur will be relegated to the bleachers.

Also Wednesday, the Senators have made it clear that the keeper of the future Filip Gustavsson, acquired from Pittsburgh in exchange for Derick Brassard, will begin the season with the Beast of Brampton of the league of the East Coast, ” where he can play 90 % of matches “, according to Dorion.

Mike McKenna and Marcus Hogberg will share the work with the club-Belleville school.

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