Picard takes turn in press box

DON BRENNAN, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 2:56 PM ET

ST. LOUIS - Alexandre Picard will be the odd man out among Senators' defenceman when the team takes on the Blues tonight.

Picard, who scored Ottawa's lone goal in a 4-1 loss to New Jersey Tuesday but was also a minus-3, will be a healthy scratch in St. Louis. It's the first time the 23-year-old Picard has been given a seat in the press box this season.

Veteran Jason Smith, who was a healthy scratch Tuesday, will return to the line up tonight.

"I had a feeling about it," Picard said after this morning's skate at Scottrade Center in St. Louis. "I didn't play the last few minutes (against the Devils).

"I'm mature enough to admit I made mistakes. Now that we have all the 'D' back (from injury) I kinda had a feeling, and it was confirmed yesterday at practice."

Coach Craig Hartsburg wants to see Picard "compete" harder than he did against the Devils.

"When Pic gives us a battle game, he's a pretty good player," said Hartsburg. "We think he can play better than he did."

Also a healthy scratch again will be swingman Christoph Schubert.

Starting in goal tonight for St. Louis will be Chris Mason, who shut out the Chicago Blackhawks in the team's last game.

Brian Elliott gets his seventh straight start tonight for Ottawa. The Senators will give backup Alex Auld the reins Friday at Columbus.


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