Morning skate update: Bishop starts as Senators look for better outcome against Leafs

The Ottawa Senators felt they deserved a better fate the last time they played the Toronto Maple Leafs — a 3-0 loss at the Air Canada Centre last Friday — and hope a similar effort pays off in the standings.

Morning skate update: Bishop starts as Senators look for better outcome against Leafs
Ben Bishop of the Ottawa Senators against the Winnipeg Jets during second period NHL action held at Scotiabank Place in Ottawa, February 09, 2013. Photo by Jean Levac/OTTAWA CITIZEN

The Ottawa Senators felt they deserved a better fate the last time they played the Toronto Maple Leafs — a 3-0 loss at the Air Canada Centre last Saturday — and hope a similar effort pays off in the standings.

It did in wins over the New Jersey Devils, New York Islanders and New York Rangers in the three games following the Leafs outing, and coach Paul MacLean is looking for more of the same against the Leafs Saturday night at Scotiabank Place.

“The consistency of our play is what we’re concerned with the most, of being consistent every night, and if we do that, we feel we’re going to give ourselves a chance, so yeah, we want to make sure we come out and play well again here tonight,” he said after running his players through the morning skate.

With No. 1 netminder Craig Anderson still considered day-to-day with a sprained ankle, the Senators will turn to Ben Bishop against the Leafs.

Bishop came on in relief of Anderson in Thursday night’s game against the New York Rangers, giving up two quick goals — and the lead — before the Senators stormed back to win in a lengthy shootout.

There had been some speculation that Robin Lehner, recalled from Binghamton following the Anderson injury, might get the nod, but Bishop is coming off two strong performances prior to the Rangers tilt — a 2-1 shootout win over the New Jersey Devils last Monday and a 1-0 loss to the Winnipeg Jets a week before that.

“He’s played very well his last two outings and he’s been here, so we’re going to put Ben in and we expect him to play well,” MacLean said.

Ben Scrivens, who is expected to get the start for the Leafs against Ottawa, turned aside 34 shots for his first NHL shutout when the two teams faced off last Friday.

MICHALEK SKATES

The Senators got some positive injury news for a change Saturday. Milan Michalek, who hasn’t played since twisting his knee prior to last week’s game against the Pittsburgh Penguins, skated by himself. Although he isn’t ready to play, and likely won’t be in time for Monday’s game, MacLean said it was a positive development.

He said Michalek was recently evaluated and that all options were likely discussed, including surgery, but there are no plans for the high-scoring winger to go under the knife.

ALFREDSSON SPEAKS

Hear what the captain had to say prior to the latest instalment of the Battle of Ontario

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