Senators update: Lehner time in Hockeytown

Robin Lehner starts in goal for the Senators against the Red Wings.

Senators update: Lehner time in Hockeytown
Robin Lehner grimaces as he removes his mask while talking with coach Rick Wamsley (Wayne Cuddington/Ottawa Citizen)

DETROIT – Robin Lehner starts in goal for the Senators against the Red Wings, amid talk by head coach Paul MacLean he may start “alternating” his goaltenders.

At least in back to back situations, such as the Senators face this weekend with games in Detroit and Carolina.

“We have a number of back-to-back games and at this point we just feel if we alternate the goalies it gives them both some opportunities to get us some wins.”

That, of course, is a far cry from the “Craig Anderson is our No. 1 goalie” declarations in recent days.

Anderson was in goal for Ottawa’s 4-3 home ice loss to Minnesota on Wednesday. Lehner played in the 5-2 loss to Philadelphia and is seeking to avenge his only other start against the Red Wings, when he was just a kid.

“I played them at home in my rookie year, when I was 19 – I got pulled,” Lehner said.

The Senators are looking to recapture the magic of a 6-1 beatdown of the Red Wings on Oct. 23, part of a surprising string of defeats suffered by the home team at the Joe Louis Arena.

Prior to that loss, the Red Wings fell 1-0 to San Jose, which began a stretch of eight straight losses on home ice. The Wings did manage to secure overtime or shootout points in six of the eight games.

Detroit finally ended the run with a 4-3 victory over the Carolina Hurricanes Thursday.

Former Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson will not be in Detroit’s lineup as he continues to heal a groin injury. He could play as early as Sunday and he is looking forward to returning to Ottawa on Dec. 1. If he returns Wednesday, the game at Canadian Tire Centre could be the 1200th game of Alfredsson’s NHL career.

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