Paul MacLean

Sens’ MacLean on goalie captains: ‘They’ve tried that once in this league and didn’t work out so good’


The Ottawa Senators aren’t rushing to name a new captain, but have shot down the possibility of it going to Craig Anderson.

On Tuesday, Sens head coach Paul MacLean provided a zinger response when asked about giving the “C” to Anderson, the club’s starting goalie:

“They’ve tried that once in this league, and didn’t work out so good.”

That quote is, of course, in reference to Vancouver’s Roberto Luongo. In 2008, Luongo became the first goalie to be named captain of his team in 60 years.

While innovative, the experiment faltered and ended badly. Luongo stepped down in 2010 and Canucks GM Mike Gillis admitted he may have made a mistake putting the “C” on his goalie.

“It may be incompatible with goaltending and the expectations that are placed on a captain in terms of availability and being the spokesman of the team,” Gillis explained. “It may have been a little too much based on how he likes to prepare and what he likes to do to get ready for the game.”

Ottawa’s captaincy has been vacant since Daniel Alfredsson stunned the organization by singing with Detroit in July.

It’s expected that Jason Spezza and Chris Phillips are the leading candidates to replace Alfredsson, though some have hinted Anderson is a viable choice given his importance to the team.

Anderson finished 4th in Vezina Trophy and 12th in Hart Trophy voting last season.

Sabres place Lehner on IR; Recall Lieuwen

Connor Brown, Robin Lehner
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They’re just one game into their regular season, but the Buffalo Sabres have already had to shift things around in their crease.

The Sabres announced that they have placed starting goaltender Robin Lehner on injured reserve after he was knocked out of Thursday’s game with a lower-body injury.

In a corresponding move, the club has recalled Nathan Lieuwen from their AHL affiliate in Rochester.

The 24-year-old didn’t play in the NHL last season, but he did have a 1-4-0 record with a 2.98 goals-against-average and a .906 save percentage in seven games during the 2013-14 season.

Lieuwen was Buffalo’s sixth round pick, 167th overall, in the 2011 draft.

The Sabres also announced that they have loaned defenseman Jake McCabe and goaltender Linus Ullmark to the Rochester Americans (AHL).

McCabe was a healthy scratch in Thursday’s game against Ottawa, while Ullmark is being activated off I.R. after having double hip surgery during the off-season.



Chara ‘doubtful’ for game against rival Canadiens

Brad Marchand, Zdeno Chara
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It looks like the Boston Bruins will be without their captain again on Saturday night.

Head coach Claude Julien told members of the media that Zdeno Chara is considered doubtful for tonight’s game against the Montreal Canadiens.

Chara suffered an upper-body injury during the preseason and he’s already been forced to miss Boston’s season opening loss to the Jets.

Per CSN, Chara says he’s improving but he won’t return to the lineup until he’s as close to 100 percent as possible.

“Every area of the injury is improving,” said Chara. “Hopefully it’s not long before I’m free of any kind of discomfort. That’s what we’re doing right now…we’re being patient. For sure you don’t want to come back, and be half of what you are…and basically hurting yourself and the team. And you’re putting yourself in a position where you could be missing more time. At this time of the season, I think it’s important to be as close as you can be to 100 percent.”

Based on the number of defensive mistakes they committed on Thursday, the Bruins need Chara back as soon as possible: