Seeing the pressure mounting on the shoulders of their head instructor DJ Smith, the players of the Ottawa Senators helped him breathe easier thanks to two triumphs in a row and they intend to build on their success to continue on the right path.
Tuesday’s match could also be a defining moment in the club’s season, which has struggled in the first two months of the campaign. By crushing the powerful New York Rangers 6-2, the “Sens” sent a message to their fans and the rest of the National Hockey League: they should not be counted as defeated, even if they occupy last place of the Atlantic section.
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For Smith, this kind of performance is a good thing, especially since some pointed to the hiring Wednesday morning of Jacques Martin – a former driver for the Ottawa team – as senior advisor to the team’s staff. coaches. However, others will say that the current instructor saved time. Because sport remains above all a matter of victories and it will take several to appease the public and reassure management.
“I thought we played really well against Columbus, but we didn’t get the result we wanted (in a 4-2 loss Friday). Sometimes we lose when we’re supposed to win. We did well on Saturday against Seattle (2-0 victory), just like here, and we received what we wanted,” Smith told the Ottawa Sun daily.
“For us, that’s nine good periods in a row: we’ve found a little regularity again. »
Cannons that produce
So, everyone tries to keep positive things in the locker room. A few key offensive players have been produced recently. Against the Blueshirts, Vladimir Tarasenko and Brady Tkachuk each scored a double, while Claude Giroux had three points. It’s important to continue the hard work, especially as the Toronto Maple Leafs arrive at the Canadian Tire Center on Thursday.
“It’s not just the story of two trios. When everyone feels comfortable with themselves and their game, we’re hard to control, Tkachuk said. This gain will be really useful. (…) There are always lessons to learn and areas to improve, but I like the direction we are taking.
“It’s good to improve,” goalkeeper Anton Forsberg said. I feel good about my performance and I think the team is playing well. We are creating a lot more scoring chances and we are playing for each other. »