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Senators players apologize after being filmed ripping assistant coach

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Six players from the Ottawa Senators have apologized to assistant coach Marty Raymond after their private comments were caught on tape and leaked to the public on Monday.

The video, which was first reported by the Ottawa Sun/Citizen, shows Thomas Chabot, Dylan DeMelo, Matt Duchene, Alex Formenton Chris Tierney, Chris Wideman and Colin White in an Uber in Phoenix on Oct. 29 trashing Raymond’s coaching style.

The video ranges from Duchene poking fun on the Senators woeful special teams play, which Raymond heads up, and at one point even saying he hasn’t paid attention in video meetings in weeks.

Wideman can be heard saying that Raymond doesn’t teach the players anything.

“Marty Raymond, the only coach in NHL history to have the worst power play and the worst PK within a calendar year,” Duchene says.

“Do you notice that when (Raymond) runs the video, if you actually do pay attention, he doesn’t ever teach you anything? He just commentates what’s happening,” Wideman adds.

“Here’s the other thing, too. We don’t change anything, ever. So why do we even have a meeting? I haven’t paid attention in three weeks,” Duchene responds.

The Senators released statements on behalf of the players and head coach Guy Boucher on Monday night:

Boucher:

“Nothing is more important to us during this rebuild than making sure our players and coaches are fully committed to our plan, our values and our system of play. We have every confidence in Marty Raymond’s coaching; in the effort and determination of our team; and in the sincerity of our players’ apology. We are now treating this as a team matter, and will be making no further comment to the media.”

The players:

“We want to apologize publicly to Marty Raymond, our teammates and coaches for our comments in Phoenix, Arizona on October 29. Our private conversation was recorded without our knowledge or consent. We’re passionate about our team, and focusing on growing together. We are grateful for the support of our fans and organization. This is an important learning experience, and we will do better.”

Uber Canada general manager Rob Khazzam took to Twitter on Monday night to condemn the recording.

“A video was released by the media today of several Uber passengers being filmed without their consent while having a private discussion during a trip in Phoenix. This is a clear violation of our terms of service and we worked vigorously to investigate this issue. Filming or recording passengers without their consent is totally unacceptable and if reported/detected we will investigate + take action to preserve our communities privacy and integrity. In this specific case, we made efforts to have the video taken down.”

The Senators host the New Jersey Devils Tuesday night. The media availability after their morning skate should be interesting.

Scott Billeck is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @scottbilleck

Coyotes’ Derek Stepan scores from own blue line

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Oh, boy.

Ottawa Senators goalie Mike Condon likely wanted to the ice to melt, swallow him up and then freeze back over again after his little blunder against the Arizona Coyotes tonight.

With the Coyotes killing a penalty, Arizona forward Derek Stepan floated a shot on Condon from his own blue line. The puck bounced, changed directions and squeaked through Condon’s pads and into the back of the net.

Stepan began skating to the bench, satisfied that he had done enough to have cleared the puck to shave a few seconds of the kill. Before he could get into his bench, the goal had gone in.

Roll the tape:

It’s tough not to feel for Condon there.

The camera was on him for five or so seconds and you could see that he just wanted to curl up into the fetal position and lay there for a bit.

Condon could only hang his head in shame. And to make things worse, he was yanked right after. Condon allowed three goals on 11 shots before heading for the early shower.

MORE: Your 2018-19 NHL on NBC TV schedule


Scott Billeck is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @scottbilleck

Duchene scores in return to Colorado

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I suppose this was bound to happen.

Ottawa Senators forward Matt Duchene scored in his return to his old stomping grounds on Friday, sticking it to the Colorado Avalanche one last time.

The Avalanche had just played a tribute video for Duchene on the jumbotron inside Pepsi Center. Duchene waved from the Sens bench and then scored seconds later.

Here’s the entire sequence:

Duchene said it was going to be an emotional game for himself prior to puck drop.

The tribute was more of a public service announcement, if we’re being honest. The announcer rattled off some of his stats from his time in Colorado. No video tribute, only a camera planted on Duchene who gave a wave to the cheering crowd.

The Duchene trade is nearing its one year anniversary.

He was dealt to the Senators in a mammoth three-team deal on Nov. 5 after months of speculation on his future with the Avs.

Earlier this week, Duchene figured he might hear some boos from the Avs’ faithful.

“I’m sure there will be the odd one,” Duchene told the Ottawa Sun. “But people have to understand that I gave everything I had when I was there.”

That didn’t stop the boos coming his way.

Whether Duchene gave his all to Colorado will be debated amongst fans for a while to come.

The stats suggest he was pretty good, though.

UPDATE: Duchene has his second of the game against his old team.


Scott Billeck is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @scottbilleck

Duchene makes return to Colorado with Senators

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Ottawa coming to town doesn’t normally evoke extra excitement. Then again, the Senators have never come to Denver with a former franchise player who demanded to be traded.

Friday night’s game at Pepsi Center pits Ottawa center Matt Duchene against his former team, the Colorado Avalanche, more than a year after he was dealt to the Senators in a three-team trade. Duchene was open about not wanting to be with the Avalanche when training camp started in 2017, saying he reported to the team to honor his contract.

A month later, he was with the Senators who, ironically, acquired him just before Colorado and Ottawa played a two-game set in Sweden. So this is the first time since the trade he will play in Denver, where he was an Avalanche for eight-plus seasons after being drafted third overall in the 2009 draft.

“It’s a lot of emotions, obviously,” Duchene told reporters Thursday. “It’s going to be really weird to walk into that rink. The only time I’ve been in the guest locker room is when we were doing our blood tests in training camp. It’s definitely going to be an interesting experience.

“There will be some nerves and some anxiety but once I get on the ice and just play hockey it should be a little easier.”

The Avalanche made out well, getting four players and three draft picks from the Senators and Nashville combined. One player, 20-year-old defenseman Samuel Girard, has become one of Colorado’s top blueliners.

The Avalanche (6-2-2) turned the page pretty quickly on the Duchene trade, reaching the playoffs for the first time in four years last spring. They’ve started strong this season despite suffering a 1-0 loss to Tampa Bay on Wednesday night.

It was the first time they had been shut out at home since March 2017, and it’s not hard to see why they’ve been able to score. The top line of Nathan MacKinnon, Mikko Rantanen and Gabe Landeskog has been producing points since last season. Wednesday was the first time they were held without a point this season.

Right after the loss the players were focusing on Ottawa.

“Good teams respond, so it obviously (stinks) tonight,” defenseman Ian Cole said after the loss to the Lightning. “You know, it’s a missed opportunity for us to beat a great hockey team but, like I said, we’re going to reassess, have a practice tomorrow and be ready to go come Friday night.”

Ottawa (4-3-1) is coming off a 4-1 loss to Boston but had won three straight before facing the Bruins. They are led in scoring by Thomas Chabot (three goals, seven assists) with Duchene third with eight points (one goal, seven assists).

Duchene isn’t the only player making a return to Denver. Goaltender Craig Anderson spent a year and a half with the Avalanche and backstopped them to the playoffs in 2010 when he played in a career-high 71 games. He has faced the Avalanche before, so the fans’ focus will be on Duchene.

MORE: Your 2018-19 NHL on NBC TV schedule

Brady Tkachuk’s first NHL goal puts family in rare territory

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When a puck caromed off Brady Tkachuk‘s skate and into the Philadelphia Flyers net Wednesday night, the Ottawa Senators rookie etched his family name into some rare NHL history.

There have been several father-son duos to have played in the NHL, perhaps most notably Bobby and Brett Hull, who scored at will during their respective eras.

But in terms of fathers who had two sons play in the NHL, the list is small. Narrow it down to fathers who scored and had both their sons score NHL goals and, well, you get a handful of surnames.

Brady’s goal against the Flyers meant he, his brother Matthew (who plays for the Calgary Flames) and his retired father Keith, have all lit the lamp at the NHL level.

Few other families can make this claim.

Of course, the Howes are on the list. Gordie was one of the best to ever play the game, and his sons Mark and Marty also scored during their respective careers.

The Folignos, with father Mike and sons Nick and Marcus are another.

Peter, Paul and Yan Stastny have done it, too.

The Hextall family took this all one step further. Bryan Sr. scored a bevy of goals during his career while Bryan Jr., Dennis and even goaltender Ron (the Flyers general manager) have all found the scoresheet with a tick in the goal column.

The Patricks are the only family to have had a father (Lester), his sons (Lynn and Muzz) and his grandsons (Craig and Glenn) score in the NHL.

An honorable mention here as well to the Nolans. Ted and son Jordan have both scored in the NHL while son Brandon had one assist with the Carolina Hurricanes during his cup of coffee in the NHL.

Scott Billeck is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @scottbilleck