Tag: Paul MacLean


Methot, Gryba and Michalek to miss Sens’ practice Saturday

Forward Jean-Gabriel Pageau is expected to return to the ice Saturday after missing Friday to nurse an injury.

The same can’t be said for Marc Methot, Eric Gryba or Milan Michalek – all three are expected to miss Saturday’s practices at the team’s Fan Fest nursing various injuries.

“It’s purely (the organization’s) decision to keep them out,” coach Paul MacLean told the Ottawa Sun. “If it was up to the players they’d all be out there skating.”

Methot, who is nursing a sore back, hasn’t played in any preseason games and was unable to do the skating tests at the start of camp as a result of the injury.

“The most important thing is to be patient and make sure he’s 100% before we put him back on the ice and not try to force something that (makes it) a long process,” said MacLean. “It’s already been a long enough process now. We want to nip in the bud and make sure when he’s back on the ice he’s 100%.”

The Senators don’t resume their preseason schedule until Sept. 30 when they visit the Winnipeg Jets.

Pageau eyes Sens’ lineup


Center Jean-Gabriel Pageau burst on the the scene as a 20-year-old with his hometown Senators during the lockout-shortened 2013 season.

Pageau scored two goals and four points in nine regular season games before adding four goals and six points in 10 playoff games as the surprising Senators defeated the Montreal Canadiens in the first round.

Since then however, Pageau an Ottawa native, has just two goals in 28 NHL games and a minus-5 rating. He spent much of last season with Ottawa’s AHL affiliate in Binghamton.

“For sure I think after my good playoffs two years ago, expectations went really high,” Pageau told the Ottawa Sun last week. “I don’t want to say last year I had a bad year, I want to say it was a learning year. I learned that nothing is guaranteed and you always need to work for your spot. You need to deserve to be there. That’s why I’m working hard this summer to make sure if I have my chance this year I’ll catch it and stay there.”

As Don Brennan points out in his piece, it appeared there may be room for Pageau on the big club when general manager Bryan Murray dealt Jason Spezza to the Dallas Stars; however, any room at center was quickly filled by the signing of David Legwand.

Presently the Senators have Kyle Turris, Mika Zibanejad, Legwand and Zack Smith filling center ice roles meaning Pageau, who is in the final year of his entry-level contract, will likely have to go back to the AHL and wait for a phone call.

Pageau was helped by the departure of fellow center Stephane Da Costa, who signed with the KHL’s HC CSKA Moscow this summer.

“For sure I see myself in the lineup,” Pageau said. “I always believe in myself and I’ll always believe in myself. But I know it’s going to be hard. That’s basically why I’m giving a little extra every morning … just work hard and give everything I have to make sure I do my best.

“If I go to camp and do my best, I’m sure they’ll find a way to find a spot in the lineup for me.”

Pageau says he got direction from Senators coach, Paul MacLean, on where he can improve heading into the 2014-15 season during the team’s exit interviews in April. One thing the 21-year-old does have working for him is his face-off abilities. With Spezza, the team’s top centerman gone, Pageau’s intangibles could prove worthy to the Senators if he has a stellar camp.

Related: Under Pressure: Turris, MacArthur & Ryan

PHT Morning Skate: Bolts’ Barberio has a long-awaited haircut in his future

Via AP

PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.

For two years, Lightning rookie defenseman Mark Barberio has let his hair grow out and a few weeks ago said he’d only get it cut after he scored his first NHL goal. Yesterday, he scored two goals against Carolina and now has to set a date with a hair dresser. (The Tampa Tribune)

Editor’s Note: Pro Hockey Talk’s partner FanDuel is hosting a $2,000 Fantasy Hockey league for Monday’s late NHL games. It’s just $10 to join and first prize is $400. Starts Monday at 7pm ET. Here’s the FanDuel link.

Jamie Langenbrunner retired last week and thinks back on his career. (Trentonian)

Alex Steen is back from his concussion but he wants more from himself. (Post-Dispatch)

Winnipeg’s James Wright is just begging to score a goal. (Winnipeg Sun)

Ottawa coach Paul MacLean is hoping rest can help his team out. (Ottawa Sun)

The Bruins are holding steady without Dennis Seidenberg. They’ll have to find a way to make it last. (CSNNE.com)

Canucks coach John Tortorella will meet with the league today, but should Flames coach Bob Hartley escape punishment, too? (The Province)

Ryane Clowe is picking things up lately in New Jersey. (Star-Ledger)

Paul MacLean’s steady hand guides Ottawa

Paul MacLean

When you think of top coaches around the league, names like Mike Babcock, Joel Quenneville, and Claude Julien usually jump out first. 2013 Jack Adams Award winner Paul MacLean has done plenty in his first two years as a head coach to butt into the conversation.

MacLean inherited a Sens team from former coach Cory Clouston two seasons ago that had low expectations. He wound up taking them to the playoffs, nearly upsetting the No. 1 team in the East in the opening round. Not bad for a guy who spent eight years as an assistant to Mike Babcock (two in Anaheim, six in Detroit).

In a short amount of time, he’s gotten his share of recognition. MacLean missed out on the Adams Award in 2012 losing to Ken Hitchcock but won it this past season after a campaign marred by injuries at all positions. He led the Senators to the fifth spot in the East and a first-round playoff series win over Montreal.

Work like that makes him either a genius coach or a master magician. Now with realignment becoming a reality, MacLean will have to compete with his former team (Detroit) and former captain (Daniel Alfredsson) and with higher expectations as well.

If he can succeed with these new challenges to face up, it’ll be impossible to ignore him as one of the league’s best coaches.

Ottawa’s super strength is in goal

Craig Anderson

When you think of the Ottawa Senators your thoughts don’t generally turn toward who is in goal. With the current team, you’re more likely to think about Jason Spezza or Erik Karlsson. Craig Anderson and Robin Lehner would like to change your mind about that.

Last season Anderson battled injury (like most of the rest of the team) and started in just 24 of 48 games. In those games, however, he was brilliant. He put up league-leading numbers in save percentage (.941) and goals against average (1.69) while going 24-12-9 leading Ottawa to the fifth seed in the East.

Numbers like those will usually put you at the front of the list for the Vezina Trophy. It’s that sort of effort that has to make Sens coach Paul MacLean breathe easier when it comes to who to play in net. Of course, it’s not as simple as it seems as he’s also got a hot shot youngster in Lehner as his backup.

Lehner’s numbers in the AHL with Binghamton the past two seasons weren’t the kind to make you think he was a top prospect, but when he took over the backup job in Ottawa last season he took off.

Lehner went 5-3-4 in his starts last season with a .936 SV% and a 2.20 GAA. If you have that kind of action to spell your starter, you’re going to win a lot of games.

No wonder people are looking at the Senators as Cup contenders. Scoring on them might prove to be impossible.