Senators notebook: Stone gets call in place of Conacher
OTTAWA — Winger Mark Stone, who had 123 points with 41 goals a season ago in junior hockey, stepped into the Senators' lineup Wednesday, with Cory Conacher coming out. Stone, 21, played in four regular-season games with the Senators.
“I've been through a lot of similar type of similar type of experiences — the world juniors and last year in Game 5 in New York (against the Rangers),” Stone said. “Once you get going, you don't really notice any difference. It's the build-up that's the worst part.”
Senators fear Neal
Goalie Craig Anderson is leery of James Neal's offensive talents. “You know he's a great player. He's got a great shot. He's the type of guy who can burn you if you're not ready for him.” Neal scored unassisted at 14:56 of the first period.
Gryba still sitting
Senators defenseman Eric Gryba sat out again with an “upper-body” injury. “Hopefully in the next couple of games I'll be able to come back,” he said. “It's tough watching the team play. But you have to make the best of it.”
Shutting down the power
Defenseman Chris Phillips said the Senators have to stop giving the Penguins' power play too much respect. “Most of the year, we've been a pretty aggressive team,” he said. “We were kind of watching to see what they were going to do — we gave them time, and they were able to move the puck around. That was a lesson for us. If you give them time, they're able to make the plays.”
Spezza's on track
Center Jason Spezza said he's feeling good since returning to the lineup Sunday following a four-month absence due to back surgery. “There's definitely soreness. It's been a long time since I've played. But I feel good,” he said. “I've been very happy with how my back's responded.”
From Pennsylvania to Ottawa
The Sens Foundation flew in 24-year-old Ottawa native Eric Doty for the game. Doty, working on his doctorate degree at the University of Pennsylvania, has raised more than $7,000 for the Sens Foundation through a Twitter fundraising initiative.
Tim Baines is a freelance writer.