Silver Nuggets: Senators play Jets in Newfoundland; Lehner reluctantly accepts AHL role

A little bit of an earlier version of the nuggets today as the Senators are set to play the Winnipeg Jets (woo! welcome back!) at 4:00 p.m. today in St. John's, Newfoundland for the 2011 Kraft Hockeyville game. The game was originally supposed to be played in Conception Bay South (close to St. John's) between Atlanta and Ottawa. However, after the club was moved to Winnipeg, and Winnipeg's AHL affiliate moved to St. John's, it made sense to move the game to the AHL arena.

Here are today's links:

General Sens News

  • Robin Lehner is choosing his words a little bit more carefully as he accepts that he will likely spend most of the season in the AHL. While he maintains that being in NHL practices helped him more last year than playing in the AHL, he allows for the fact that maybe the club knows more than him. He still hopes to at least get a few games in the NHL, saying that he will be happy if he can get 60 games in the AHL and a few in the NHL. (Ottawa CitizenOttawa Sun)
  • The Senators roster for today's game includes Erik Karlsson, David Rundblad, Jared Cowen, Daniel Alfredsson and Mika Zibanejad. (Ottawa Citizen)
  • St. John's native, Colin Greening, is looking forward to playing in his home town. Can we forgive him for being a huge Doug Gilmour fan growing up and following the Leafs? To be fair, I guess a lot of our players must have been. (Ottawa Senators)
  • Statistically speaking one of the greatest goaltenders in the post-expansion NHL playoff history (1st in goals against average, 3rd in save percentage), Patrick Lalime will be part of the Senators alumni at Kraft Hockeyville. (NHL.com)
  • The first captain of the Ottawa Senators, Laurie Boschman will also be in Newfoundland for the weekend and Boschman, who spent seven seasons with the Winnipeg Jets, is very happy to see them back in the NHL. (Ottawa Senators)
  • A look at Kaspars Daugavins, who was convinced to stay in North America for one more year. You would have to think he is starting the season in the AHL, but he would be one of the first call-ups. This is likely his last year in North America if he can't crack the Ottawa roster. (Kaspars Daugavins)
  • Don Brennan likes the look of a Chris Phillips and Brian Lee pairing. I would have to say I agree, Brian Lee seems to have found a way to make it work with Chris Phillips and vice versa. This is definitely one pairing I would keep together at least to start. Sadly though, the Ottawa Senators don't let me make decisions for them, something I can't quite figure out. (Ottawa Sun)
  • Senators prospect Shane Prince will be out of action for 2-4 weeks after injuring his shoulder in a game for the Ottawa 67s. (Ottawa Citizen)
  • Do Sergei Gonchar and Chris Phillips deserve less time? According to this analysis they do. Although, it also suggests Alex Ovechkin and Sidney Crosby should get less power play time. Still, worth reading I think. (Hockey Prospectus)
  • With Mika Zibanejad launching his new website, James Gordon looks at the growing number of hockey players building their brand (Jonathan Toews Enterprises? Ha!). It has helped Paul Bissonnette, with only 104 career games and 4 career goals on what Gordon calls an irrelevant hockey team, get over 136,000 twitter followers. He has even been invited to TSN's hockey panel. One of the things that Gordon found on Zibanejad's website was: Mika was drafted by KHL club Lokomotiv Yaroslavl. He of course decided to stay in the Swedish league. (Senators Extra)

General Hockey News

  • Here is a really strange article by Ryan Lambert at Puck Daddy. Apparently Winnipeg is pretending that Atlanta didn't use to have a hockey team because they fired the Atlanta staff? Also, as for the media seeming too happy about the Jets return? Well, with the euphoria in the city, isn't it hard to report the hockey news in the city, or even the country, without mentioning the general happiness? All in all, for whatever reason, he seems a tad bitter about Winnipeg having a team again. (Yahoo!)
  • Jimmy Howard's new mask will feature a tribute to Brad McCrimmon, Ruslan Salei and Stefan Liv, all three of whom died in the plane crash that killed the entire Lokomotiv club. (Yahoo!)
  • For all of you missing Sidney Crosby, he is now participating in scrimmage and thus one step closer to a return. (NHL)
  • A list of the top 30 prospects for the 2012 NHL Draft, considering various early lists. Russian forward Nail Yakupov is the clear #1, while the Sens are slated to pick Stefan Matteau at #30 after Daniel Alfredsson lifts the Stanley Cup in Ottawa this summer. (Copper and Blue)
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