Thursday, January 13, 2011
Ottawa at NY Islanders
The Ottawa Senators come to Long Island to face an angry Islanders team tonight. During a taping of a TSN show Wednesday morning at the Coliseum, a reporter called the Islanders "a perennial dormat." During practice yesterday, Islanders center Zenon Konopka yelled at the reporter from the ice "We're not a doormat anymore." Konopka and John Tavares were interviewed by Newsdays' Katie Strang after practice. Konopka added, "We were just sitting there enjoying our morning coffee and yes, we take issue with being called a doormat. We have a good group of young guys that are making news like JT, Comeau, and Bailey who are working hard and playing well. So let's talk about us being a little underrated instead of a doormat." John Tavares, the Islanders number one pick of 09 has picked up his play as of late and is starting to resemble the potential superstar that he was projected to be. He also spoke up, "No one likes being called a doormat or being considered that at this level,"Tavares said. "We've done some really good things this year, we've beaten some good teams. We've held some good players in check. We've had our own success at many different stages. I don't think we're an easy team to play against."
The Islanders will once again start rookie goalie Kevin Poulin. Due to the trade of Dwayne Roloson and injury to Rick Dipietro, Poulin's NHL career has started earlier than expected. However, in 2 starts and almost 3 full games, Poulin is 1-1 with a .944 save percentage and 1.97 GAA.
The Senators are in a free fall and have lost 6 games in a row. Coach Cory Clouston's job is in jeopardy. The Senators coach has named a starting goalie the day before a game for this first time in his tenure. The Sens have called up 19 year old Robin Lehner. Lehner has made two appearances in relief this season without giving up a goal on 10 shots.
The Senators are coming off a 6-0 loss at the hands of the Bruins and people suspect that one more poor showing and Clouston could be out.
The Senators are a lost team heading into the Coliseum where the Islanders are 4-0-2 in their last 6 and are fired up feeling they still have a lot to prove.
The Pick: Islanders -110