Erik Karlsson summed up the latest left shoulder injury to Peter Regin best.
“It sucks,” said the Senators 21-year-old defenceman, Regin’s best friend on the team. “I think he played great when he first came here and now he’s got the shoulder problem going again. We don’t know how bad it is, but it’s definitely hurting the team and him, as well.”
Regin had season ending shoulder last February. He missed the start of the season after aggravating the shoulder during training camp. He then played only 1:28 in Thursday’s 4-1 win over Winnipeg, re-injuring the shoulder following a light bump by the Jets’ Nik Antropov.
Senators coach Paul MacLean didn’t want to speculate on the severity of the injury Friday – Regin is scheduled for more tests Saturday – but the initial indications aren’t positive. Zenon Konopka will take Regin’s spot in the lineup against Columbus.
“It wasn’t like a great catastrophic hit or anything, it just looked like a routine play,” MacLean said. “We lose an experienced NHL player, and he has been a very consistent player for us, through the first seven games of the season.”
Regin has one goal and two assists in his five games and his plus/minus rating of plus 3 is the best on the team.
Even though 18-year-old rookie Mika Zibanejad is also a centre, MacLean says a decision on his status with the team won’t be effected by Regin’s injury. MacLean says the Senators want to act in Zibanejad’s best interests – keeping him or sending him back to Sweden after nine games – regardless of the severity of Regin’s shoulder problems.
KONOPKA PROUD: Konopka, 30,will play in his 200th NHL game tonight and he acknowledges his pride in the accomplishment, something few observers believed he would attain when he toiled as a hard-nosed centre with the Ottawa 67′s from 1998-2002. Konopka took the hard road, playing 108 games in the East Coast Hockey League and 394 games in the AHL, never giving into thoughts he would never make the big leagues. “I remember sitting in Boise, Idaho, with a high ankle sprain and when you’re in Idaho and you’re not in the lineup, you’re a long way from the NHL,” he said. “There were a couple of lifetime deals (offered to me) in the East Coast League, where I could be comfortable, but I just didn’t want to give up the dream.”
MOVEMBER ARRIVING SOON: Konopka, Karlsson and injured defenceman Matt Carkner are planning on joining head coach Paul MacLean for a Movember fundraising initiative, raising funds for Prostate Cancer Canada by wearing mustaches. MacLean, generally regarded as having the best mustache in the NHL, joked that the youthful-looking Karlsson has some work to do. “He needs a little fertilizer,” said MacLean. “After looking at him today, he’s off to a poor start. He’s going to have to research fertilizer and see what makes it grow quicker.”
PROSPAL SPEAKS OUT: Former Senator Vaclav Prospal was outspoken in his criticism of his Columbus teammates leading up to Friday’s game against Detroit. Columbus entered the game with a record of 0-5-1, dead last in the NHL. “For us to be getting out of this, it’s a matter of putting more pride in ourselves going to the net, creating screens, getting on loose pucks,” Prospal told the Columbus Dispatch.”But I would say the biggest thing is it starts in practice. It’s the way you practice that becomes the habits you take into the game. This is what the young guys should be doing, and the older guys should be teaching them to do.”
Prospal said it’s about the players, not the coaches. “The coaches are expressing enough, but ultimately it’s up to each individual, how they approach it. The coaches can do only so much to guide you, show you what to do. Ultimately, it’s on the individual to perform out there. Not try to do it, do it. (Against Dallas) it’s great that we had 40 shots, but we still scored two goals. It’s not enough.”