Cory Conacher will be the old man on a young man’s line against the Sabres on Friday.
“Old man” being a relative term, of course.
The 23-year-old rookie, acquired by Ottawa on Wednesday from Tampa in exchange for Ben Bishop, will make his Sens debut by skating with a pair of fellow first-year players — 22-year-old Jakob Silfverberg and 19-year-old Mika Zibanejad.
“I think we have a lot of speed on our line. Those two guys that I’m playing with are guys that are very confident with the puck and they’re very patient,” Conacher told NHL.com. “They know how to make plays and, like I said, they’re fast too, so they’ll take pucks to the net pretty quick.”
Conacher finds himself in a unique position not just because of the “all-rookie” line, but also because of his point total.
With 9G-15A-24PTS through 35 games, he arrived in Ottawa as the team’s scoring leader. He has two more points that the former co-leaders — Sergei Gonchar and Kyle Turris — who have both notched 22 points this year.
Ottawa’s doesn’t have a single guy lighting it up, but has been getting remarkably balanced scoring in the wake of losing top point-producers like Jason Spezza, Erik Karlsson and Milan Michalek.
The Sens have 14 players that have scored 10 points or more this year and, while they don’t have a double-digit goalscorer (yet), they do have nine players with at least five goals or more.
Getting Conacher will add more scoring depth, though he’ll need to reverse his current slump.
After starting the season with 18 points in his first 19 games, the former Canisius College standout has scored just six points in his last 16.