Senators notebook: Richardson gets big assist

Peter Regin gives assistant coach Luke Richardson a big assist for helping him get back in the Ottawa Senators lineup Saturday night – eight weeks after he was originally sidelined with another left shoulder setback.

Peter Regin gives assistant coach Luke Richardson a big assist for helping him get back in the Ottawa Senators lineup Saturday night – eight weeks after he was originally sidelined with another left shoulder setback.

Regin’s return came as a bit of a surprise, but he had been quietly working in the background with Richardson for the past several weeks, much of it with the Senators on the road.

“It was mostly Luke, to be honest,” Regin said, when asked about who put his shoulder and legs to the test in workouts. “They’ve been on the road so much. At least our assistant coach is in great shape. He has been doing it all with me and skating the same as me. I have to thank him for all the hard work he has put into this.”

Regin, who lined up at left wing on a line with Nick Foligno and Daniel Alfredsson Saturday against Vancouver, was naturally anxious to get rolling again. He scored a goal and two assists in five games before getting hurt.

“I’ve been looking forward to this day for awhile,” he said, before the game. “You have a lot of time to refocus and think about all the mental stuff and I’ve had so much time that I don’t think it’s going to be a problem mentally.”

WIERCIOCH STABLE: After taking a shot to the throat in a game with Binghamton Friday, Senators defence prospect Patrick Wiercioch, “is currently in hospital and is in stable condition,” the team said Saturday night. Wiercioch took a puck in the throat early in Binghamton’s 5-1 loss to Norfolk and was immediate rushed to a nearby hospital.

“It’s a scary moment,” Binghamton captain Mark Parrish told the Binghamton Press & Sun-Bulletin after Friday’s game. “I’ve been in his shoes, where you’re at the hospital, and it’s scary being on that side, too, because you’re in a situation you’re uncomfortable with and you’re not sure what’s going to happen. That being said, as a team, I think it’s sometimes best to give a guy some air and let him work through it and process it a bit himself. Hopefully we’ll get to see Patty back in the locker room soon.”

PAUSE FOR THOUGHT: Chris Neil has suffered bruises around his eyes before, but the current one under his right eye isn’t front a punch. It came courtesy of Petr Sykora’s stick during New Jersey’s 5-4 shootout win over the Senators Thursday. Neil also needed “three or four stitches” to close the gash between his eyes, a cut which resulted in a fountain of blood pouring onto the ice, before he raced to the bench. Neil knew his eyes were safe because he could see all the blood. While NHL tough guys shy away from wearing visors, Neil says it’s not out of the question for him. “Sure, you think about it,” he said.

SWEDISH SUCCESS FOR RUNDBLAD: Senators coach Paul MacLean raised some eyebrows by using defenceman David Rundblad fourth in the shootout Thursday – he was stopped by Devils goaltender Johan Hedberg – but he says there was some rationale to the decision. “He was 9 for 10 in Sweden last year and when we do (shootouts) in practice, he scores every time,” said the coach.

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