Lehner hoping practice makes perfect in shootouts

Robin Lehner is devoting some extra time to shootouts and other news and notes from the Senators.

Robin Lehner is putting extra work to change his success in shootouts lately. Photo by Wayne Cuddington, The Ottawa Citizen.

Robin Lehner did some extra work on Friday morning in an effort to cure the shootout blues.

For about 15 minutes at the end of practice, Lehner tried to find the winning formula by taking some shootout attempts from his teammates.

After back-to-back shootout losses, Lehner was anxious to find a solution.

“I needed more practice with that,” Lehner said. “It’s a hard transition from the AHL to up here, it’s a little different.”

Lehner spoke with goalie coach Rick Wamsley after to discuss what he saw during practice. Lehner says he just needs to concentrate on being patient.

“One of the strong points in my game this year has been that I’m patient,” Lehner said. “So I’ve just got to try to get back to that in the shootout.”

Coach Paul MacLean announced that Ben Bishop will be making the start against the Buffalo Sabres on Saturday afternoon, but Lehner wants to be prepared for when he is called upon again.

“It’s not a science the (shootout),” Lehner said. “It’s about having the right momentum and patience.

“I have to let the players make the first move. Right now, I’m making it.”

PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT

Daugavins continued to practise his Riga Wraparound shot with the puck on the toe of his stick, but each time with a different move at the end. He says he can try the move multiple different ways.

“I can go both sides,” Daugavins said. “Get higher and if (the goalie) is poke-checking me, I can slide it underneath him.

“You just gotta watch what the goalie does.”

When asked if this is going to be his signature move, Daugavins said, “Not every time.”

ONE GAME AT A TIME

In a shortened season, every point counts that much more, so the Senators are making sure they concentrate on one game at a time.

“Every game is important,” captain Daniel Alfredsson said. “It’s going to get magnified the further along we get in the season.

“For us every game is an opportunity to get points and make the most of every night.”

The Senators are currently on a 10-game streak of one-goal games, close to tying a franchise record of 12. MacLean is enjoying the run.

“It’s great fun,” he said. “It’s great growth for our team. If you play in the Stanley Cup playoffs, they’ll be one-goal games.

“So if you can get used to playing there, get comfortable playing there, you’ll know what to do.”

With the Eastern Conference so tight, the two games this weekend, against Buffalo and Winnipeg, will be important.

“Twos add up better than ones,” MacLean said. “But ones add up better than zeroes. Every game is important.”

HANDS OFF THAT NICKNAME

The Senators’ newest forward, Matt Kassian, was the subject of controversy early this season over his nickname “The Kassassin”.

Matt Kassian has the same last name as the Vancouver Canucks’ forward Zach Kassian, and Canucks’ fans had taken to calling Zach by the same nickname since he joined their team.

But Matt Kassian has the nickname officially trademarked.

“That got so blown out of ridiculous proportion,” Matt Kassian said. “It’s so funny nowadays, people read something on the Internet and blow it up to something it’s completely not.”

There were suggestions that Matt Kassian was planning to sue over the use of the nickname, but he said reports were “absurd.”

“I do have a trademark, the reason being for charities and whatnot,” Matt Kassian said. “We just sent the Canucks a message saying, this is trademarked, we do use it for charities

“The (Kassian) names are close (and) it would cause less confusion if they avoided using Kassassin.

“It wasn’t because we were angry.”

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