Power shift for Senators

BRUCE GARRIOCH -- Ottawa Sun

, Last Updated: 12:49 PM ET

The Senators' power play is about to get a boost from Mach 9.

Unhappy with Ottawa's 0-for-10 showing on the man advantage in a 5-2 victory over the Bruins on Thursday in Boston, coach Bryan Murray moved winger Martin Havlat to the No. 1 power-play unit yesterday at practice.

That meant captain Daniel Alfredsson was back at his familiar spot on the point with defenceman Wade Redden, while Havlat took Alfredsson's spot up front with Dany Heatley and Jason Spezza.

BEST AT HOME

Though the Senators are the top-ranked team on the power play at home with 29.2% success rate, the club is 27th on the road at 10.6%.

Murray hopes the changes pay dividends beginning tonight, when the Senators open a four-game home stand against the Sabres.

"I'm not happy with the power play and the situation has got to improve," Murray said following a one-hour workout at the Corel Centre. "Being 10.6% on the road and going 0-for-10 is just not acceptable. We just aren't doing enough and everybody should be disappointed with it.

"That's why I put them out there with a 5-on-0 today just to see if we could get them moving the puck and get some shots going. Even in 5-on-3 situations, we're not getting enough shots. It seems like we're getting everybody bunched up and we're not putting the shots through. We're trying to make the impossible play with passes across the box. That's not working."

As hot as the line of Alfredsson, Spezza and Heatley has been, adding Havlat to the mix could be just the fuel the power play needs. He has been red-hot with sevens goals in four games since returning from a five-game suspension for kicking Boston's Hal Gill.

CHARA MOVED

Moving Havlat to the first unit means big defenceman Zdeno Chara will move to the second unit with Bryan Smolinski, Chris Neil, Mike Fisher and Brian Pothier.

"We will see what happens in the game, but being on the first power-play unit is a place where you want to be," said Havlat. "Getting a chance with those guys is something you want to get.

"Any time you can get playing time and get more of a chance to get involved in the game is fun. It doesn't matter whether it's the power play, killing penalties or in 5-on-5 situations. You want to be playing. We've got a lot of talent and skill on this power play and hopefully we are able to score some goals."

ALFIE TO THE POINT

Alfredsson said he's quite comfortable moving back to the point.

"I know we have to start getting more shots through. Special teams are so important in this game and you can't afford to go 0-for-10," said Alfredsson. "We know that we've been really good on the power play at home, but we haven't been very good on the road. They're just trying to change things up a bit."

bruce.garrioch@ott.sunpub.com 


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