New jerseys have McGrattan wary

CHRIS STEVENSON -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 8:14 AM ET

One of the spins put on the new sweaters NHL players are wearing is the jerseys would enhance player safety.

But Senators policeman Brian McGrattan wonders about that.

The jerseys are tighter and made of a slicker material.

One line of thinking is with the tight sleeves and slick material, players in a fight won't be able to tie up an opponent, perhaps opening the door for some big punches.

McGrattan's concern is with what happens when a player gets "jerseyed," having his sweater pulled over a player's head.

"I saw (New Jersey's) Cam Janssen in that situation the other night and he got fed pretty good. He couldn't get out of it," said McGrattan.

"I think when that happens, the linesmen are going to have to jump in pretty quick. Nobody wants to see somebody get hurt. We're not out there to kill each other."

Janssen twice had his sweater pulled over his head by Philly's Jesse Boulerice.

Janssen wound up with a separated shoulder that will require surgery.

"I've seen Janssen fight quite a bit and I've never seen that," Devil Mike Rupp told the New York Post. "It's still early to know, but if it is a problem, somebody could be hurt very, very badly. It could be an eye."

There is some concern the tie-downs on the new jerseys -- the strap that attaches to the back of the pants to prevent it from being pulled over a player's head -- are too long.

The jerseys also, apparently, rip easily, allowing it to be pulled over the head.

Devils GM Lou Lamoriello told the Post he's looking into the situation.

As far as the new jerseys being hard to grab, McGrattan said that's not a big concern to him.

"I don't like holding on anyways," he said.

HEAR AND THERE: Since hearing he had to pick up his game from coach John Paddock, Senator prospect Nick Foligno has gone out and had five points, including a nice backhanded goal to tie the game 3-3 last night in the second period ... Despite giving up three goals before he gave way to rookie Brian Elliott in the Ottawa net, Martin Gerber made a number of solid stops. He gave up one goal on the power play (on a rebound), had another go in off defenceman Chris Phillips' foot and had little chance on Tom Poti's cannon on another power play.

SPECULATIONS: On two of his early shifts, Senators prospect Alexander Nikulin twice did things that led to good scoring chances ... Talk is Nike is looking to get out of the hockey business and divest itself of Nike-Bauer ... The Caps' acquisition of Michael Nylander might wind up being one of the best moves of the off-season if he winds up feeding Alex Ovechkin the puck.

REVELATIONS: Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson didn't shy away from using the body last night. He had the first hit of the game when he lined up Washington's Shaone Morrisonn about 10 seconds in and also had a good hit on Ovechkin to spring loose a puck as the Senators were killing a 5-on-3 situation in the second ... Morrisonn was lucky a little earlier in the game when McGrattan took a good run at him and just missed ... The Senators announced early yesterday there were only 3,500 tickets left for last night's game, which means a lot of people opted to stay home. They missed a pretty good night: Goals by Alfredsson, Jason Spezza and Dany Heatley and their team battling back from a 3-1 deficit to take the lead early in the third.

THE BUZZ: They might want to start calling him "Dr." Martin Gerber. He seemed to find the cure for Ray Emery's ailing wrist. It's just a coincidence Emery was on the ice and taking shots the day after Gerber's 52-save shutout against the Flyers on Tuesday.


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