Players won't 'accept' losing

BRUCE GARRIOCH, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 10:01 AM ET

The Senators are promising to fight to the finish.

New coach Cory Clouston wants to make sure the club's work ethic doesn't slip with 33 games left in the regular season and the Senators 15 points out of a playoff spot.

Coming off a 1-0 loss to the Kings in Clouston's debut Tuesday and preparing to face the first-place Bruins tonight at Scotiabank Place, the Senators are offering reassurances they're not going to quit on the season.

"It's frustrating for everybody. Nobody enjoys when a coach gets fired or a player gets traded," said captain Daniel Alfredsson. "We've got somebody new in here with (Clouston) and we've got to try to rally around his ideas as quickly as possible.

"We're going to be more aggressive on the forecheck, which might bring a little more emotion from us in our play. It showed (against the Kings) that we can play a pretty good game. That's the main thing for us: We need to generate more offence and play with emotion."

The Senators insist they're not expecting to lose.

"We're not going to accept losing. It's no fun. There's no question. It's a lot more fun winning. That's what we're all here to do," said centre Mike Fisher.

"We know our chances are very slim of making the playoffs. At the same time, we've just got to become a team and work on some things and make sure we're all working on giving everything we've got. Hopefully, we can make a run down the stretch."

If the last three days are any indication, Clouston will do his best to make improvements. He held a special power-play practice with the top two units yesterday at 10:30 a.m. (before regular practice at 11), hours after the Senators went 0-for-5 with the man advantage.

"You'd like to see a little bit more movement (on the power play)," said Clouston.

Clouston also made an effort to speak with all the players after practice to see how they're feeling.

"The attitude (of the players) has been great. That's one of the most promising things out of the last two days is that they've been like sponges. They all have questions. They are all very eager and willing to learn and willing to listen.

"We just looked at the video and we probably created about 20 more turnovers. I talked to a bunch of the forwards and they felt they probably had the puck more times than they had the previous four or five games.

"It's something they can build on."

Off the glass

Fired along with coach Craig Hartsburg, assistant Curtis Hunt has accepted the offer to replace Clouston as coach in Binghamton. Hunt, 42, was concerned about moving his family midway through the season, but decided he didn't want to pass up a good opportunity to stay behind a bench. "He thought about it for a couple of days," said GM Bryan Murray. "He's an experienced head coach in junior hockey. He did work in the AHL in the past. I think he's got strong character. He's got a work ethic that will allow the players to benefit from his experience and his demands. The impression I got was that he wanted the job badly. He was a little concerned about moving his family again. But, at the end of the day, it's the right decision for him." Assistant GM Tim Murray said he had 10 calls from candidates interested in the Binghamton job ... F Peter Regin was sent back to the Baby Sens because he wasn't going to be in the lineup tonight. F Ryan Shannon was called up.

BRUCE.GARRIOCH@SUNMEDIA.CA

The Senators are have promising ed to fight to the finish..

NOne of new coach Cory Clouston wants 'spriorities

first acts since taking over the Senators from the fired Craig Hartsburg on Monday was to make sure the club's work ethic doesn't slip with only 33 games left in the regular season and the Senators sitting 154 points out of a playoff spot.out of the playoffs (heading into last night's games).the

final playoff spot on the Eastern Conference.

Coming off a 1-0 loss to the Los Angeles Kings in Clouston's debut Tuesday and preparing to face the first-place Boston Bruins tonight at Scotiabank Place, the Senators are offering reassurances they're trying to reassure fans teverybody that they're not going to quit despite their dire situation. with the situation looking pretty grim.

"It's frustrating for everybody. Nobody enjoys when a coach gets fired or a player gets traded," said Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson yesterday. "We've got somebody new in here with (Clouston) and we've got to try to rally around his ideas as quickly as possible.

"I think you're going to see a more aggressive style from us. We're going to be more aggressive on the forecheck, which might bring a little more emotion from us in our play. It showed (against the KingsLos Angeles) that we can play a pretty good game. That's the main thing for us: We need to generate more offence and play with emotion."

The Senators insist swear they're not expecting to lose.

"We're not going to accept losing. It's no fun. There's no question. It's a lot more fun winning. That's what we're all here to do. We know our chances are very slim of making the playoffs," said centre Mike Fisher.

"At the same time, we've just got to become a team and work on some things and make sure we're all working on giving everything we've got. Hopefully, we can make a run down the stretch."

If the last three days are any indication, Clouston will do his best to make improvements. He is going to make sure improvements are made. He held a special power- play practiceschool at 10:30 a.m. with the top two units yesterday at 10:30 a.m. (before regular practice at 11), hours after the Senators went 0-for-5 on the power play.

after the club went 0-for-5 against the Kings which was before everybody else was on the ice at 11 a.m.

"You'd like to see a little bit more movement (on the power play)," said Clouston.

But, Clouston also admitted the club's confidence would have been boosted if the Senators had cashed in on some of their scoring opportunities. He said he made an effort to speak with all the players for a minute or two after practice to see how they're feeling.

"The attitude (of the players) has been great. That's one of the most promising things out of the last two days is that they've been like sponges. They all have questions. They are all very eager and willing to learn and willing to listen," said Clouston.

"We just looked at the video and we probably created about 20 more turnovers. I talked to a bunch of the forwards and they felt they probably had the puck more times than they had the previous four or five games. It's something they can build on."

Off the glass

l OFF THE GLASS: Fired along with coach Craig Hartsburg. assistant by the Senators Monday along with Hartsburg, assistant Curtis Hunt has accepted the offerjob to replace Clouston as coach in Binghamton. Hunt, 42, was concerned with the club's AHL affiliate in Binghamton. Though Hunt, 42, had concerns about moving his family midway through the season, but decided he didn't he felt he didn't want to pass up a good opportunity to stay behind a bench. "He thought about it for a couple of days," said Senators GM Bryan Murray. "No. 1, he's an experienced head coach in junior hockey. He did work in the AHL in the past. I think he's got strong character. He's got a work ethic that will allow the players to benefit from his experience and his demands. The impression I got was that he wanted the job badly. He was a little concerned about moving his family again. But, at the end of the day, it's the right decision for him and I think he's really excited about it." Assistant GM Tim Murray said he had 10 calls from candidates interested in the Binghamton job ... F Peter Regin was sent back to the Baby Sens because he wasn't going to be in the lineup tonight against the Bruins. F Ryan Shannon was called up ... D Alexandre Picard, who has a wrist injury, wasn't on the ice yesterday and won't play tonight.on't suit up either.


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