Nobody should tell Shean Donovan to follow his nose in the next little while -- he doesn't have much of a sense of smell.
The rugged Senators winger had a tough night Thursday against the Edmonton Oilers at Scotiabank Place. Not only did he break his beak once in the first period after getting hit by Zack Storitini, he returned later and took another shot in the nose from Ladislav Smid not long after.
Donovan took some ribbing from his teammates for his beat-up schnozz.
"It's not the first time I've broken it, but it's not pretty, that's for sure," said Donovan yesterday. "(Doctor) Don Chow just pushed it back into place, and I figured it looked a lot prettier than it did before. You're psyched up to play the game and you want to play.
"I've broken it a few different times. I hadn't done it in a while, actually. In junior, it used to happen a lot. It was probably (the worst) because of where it ended up. I felt my nose on the side of my face. My modelling career is over, but it was never going to start anyway."
The Senators had a laugh at Donovan's expense.
"His nose was pretty much at his ear," said centre Mike Fisher. "He's a warrior, that's for sure."
Coach Cory Clouston said he was pleased to see Donovan return to the lineup despite the injury.
"Those are the kinds of things that inspire the bench. The fact he wanted to be out there shows a lot about his character," said Clouston. "For him to come back and play shows a lot about his mental toughness, his character and that he wants to be part of this. That's special."
Playing for pride
The Senators don't have a lot left to play for, but they insist they won't just be playing out the string and want to finish the season strong. "We've just got to relax and play," said Fisher. "At certain points in the season, we were feeling pressure. Sometimes, we didn't respond to that very well. When you're relaxed, good things happen. We seem to have played a lot better lately and we've just got to keep that going and not let up at all. Different guys are fighting for jobs and there's lots of things to play for." Clouston, whose future won't be decided by GM Bryan Murray until the end of the year, said the club has a lot of reasons to want to finish strong. "There's pride on the line," said Clouston. "We've got to try and create momentum -- if, in fact, we're not making the playoffs, then for the following season."
Off the glass
Senators RW Chris Neil expects to resume skating with the team today. He has been out since Feb. 11, when he suffered a lacerated calf against the Sabres. His next step will be to get cleared for contact ... It would appear the club could be without D Alex Picard for the rest of the season. He suffered a knee injury and has been placed on the injury-reserve list. The timetable is 3-4 weeks, which doesn't leave him much of a window to return ... The Senators can expect to face a couple of former teammates in their next two games. Sabres G Patrick Lalime will start tonight in Ottawa and G Martin Gerber will likely be in the net for the Maple Leafs Monday when they come to town.