Aching Alfie questionable

Sens captain Daniel Alfredsson might not play against the Sharks. SUN MEDIA/Errol McGihon

Sens captain Daniel Alfredsson might not play against the Sharks. SUN MEDIA/Errol McGihon

BRUCE GARRIOCH -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 3:29 PM ET

SAN JOSE -- The Senators might have to wade through Shark-infested waters without their captain tonight.

While Daniel Alfredsson was able to ride a stationary bike yesterday, he isn't sure if he'll be ready to suit up against the San Jose Sharks.

Alfredsson was still pretty sore yesterday after taking a cross-check to the ribs from defenceman Francois Beauchemin in Monday's 3-1 loss to the Ducks in Anaheim.

Asked if he could have played if there was a game last night, Alfredsson replied: "I don't know ... Probably not."

Though it's doubtful Alfredsson will be ready to play because of muscle spasms as result of the hit, the Senators are hopeful he'll be able to take part in the morning skate and face the Sharks.

"I don't know. We'll see how it develops. It's going to depend on how much pain I can endure," said Alfredsson, who skipped yesterday's practice in Anaheim. "We'll see how it is (today). It's still sore. It hasn't even been 24 hours.

"I shouldn't be out too long. It's not sore all the time. I get the muscle spasms when I try to move one way. My movement is not great. (Beauchemin) caught me right in the right spot because I could feel it tighten up right away."

Senators coach and GM Bryan Murray hopes Alfredsson can suit up. With only 15 games left in the regular season, the Senators need all the help they can get in the push for top spot in the East, not to mention just staying in the playoff race.

HAS PLAYED HURT

Losing Alfredsson for any period of time would be a blow for the struggling Senators.

Murray revealed on the weekend that Alfredsson was already playing injured.

The Senators know if Alfredsson can play, he will. He's done it in the past.

"That's what happens to good players," said Murray. "You get hit more than most people and teams sometimes play a little tougher on you. That's quite often the game plan.

"We all do it. We all pay attention to the good player on the other team and finish our checks on them more often. He happens to be that guy on our team."

That's why Murray will leave the choice in Alfredsson's hands.

FOLIGNO COULD PLAY

If the captain can't play, either Nick Foligno or Brian McGrattan will take his place in the lineup. Both were scratches against the Ducks.

"I'd like to win," said Murray, who felt Beauchemin could have been penalized for the cross-check. "I wouldn't want (Alfredsson) to play if it would further damage him, but if he can play, even with a little discomfort, and not further (damage) anything, I'd like him to play."

With or without Alfredsson, the Senators hope they can build on what they did for the final two periods against the Ducks.

They didn't start out well in the first period and fell behind 2-0, but outplayed Anaheim from late in the period (after Christoph Schubert scored to make it 2-1) until a double-minor led to an Anaheim goal late in the third period.


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