Sens lose toss to Thomas, again

DON BRENNAN, QMI AGENCY

, Last Updated: 12:17 AM ET

The Senators lost the coin toss Tuesday night.

No, not a method which coach Cory Clouston used to make a (wrong) decision on his starting goalie. They lost the game of chance involving the guy between the Boston Bruins pipes.

Again.

“I try not to think about it,” Tim Thomas said after the morning skate, when asked about a run of domination that saw him arrive at Scotiabank Place with a personal 10-game winning streak against the Senators.

“To be realistic, it’s like flipping heads with a quarter 10 times in a row. You know tails has to come sooner or later. That’s if you think about it.

“The people that are the luckiest are the ones that don’t realize how lucky they’re getting.”

Yeah, Thomas sure was lucky on this visit. He was lucky Brian Elliott was so bad on Boston’s first goal just 146 seconds into the game. He was lucky that inept play around the Ottawa net allowed the visitors to go up 2-0 by the 6:05 mark. He was lucky the Senators didn’t even bother to show up with a test for him until an Alex Kovalev wrist shot at 7:56.

He was lucky his teammates gave him a 4-0 lead as comfortable as a Westin Hotel Heavenly Bed by the time Clouston made his second mid-game goaltending switch in two days.

By then, the Senators’ chances of winning were about the same as a guy being able to flip heads 100 times in a row.

As lucky as Thomas was, so were the people at home trying to decide whether to keep their TVs on this game or the gold-medal tilt in Saskatoon. By 8:15 p.m., TSN had to have all the viewers who began the night watching the Senators game on Sportsnet.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Olympic team could end up being very lucky to have Thomas on their side at the Vancouver Games next month.

“I don’t think it’s anything about playing Ottawa,” Thomas said of a streak that now stands at 11.

“Actually, if you look at my record, I think you’ll just find it’s not an exact thing, but in Canadian buildings I’ve just done pretty well. Somehow just the focus of the crowd and the different energy that’s up here, it helps. I’ve rarely lost a game in Toronto, for example. Last year in Vancouver and Edmonton, I had back-to-back shutouts.

“I’m an American ... but like I said before, maybe it’s the Canadian air.”

Or the wind that always keeps blowing the quarter heads-side up.

STARTS AND STOPS

Nice to see the Senators have a guy who will do ANYTHING to change the momentum. Matt “Big Country” Carkner has to be one of the few players who will still drop the gloves with Zdeno Chara. Would have been nice to see the two giants stay on their feet a little longer, though ... Chara went right inside the penalty box to give Shawn Thornton a pat after the latter fought Carkner in the second ... The Senators had ample opportunity to sign Miroslav Satan, the 35-year-old winger who made his debut with the B’s last night. They said thanks, but no thanks.

BETWEEN PERIODS

Thomas “loved” playing in the Winter Classic at Fenway Park Jan. 1. Especially the way things turned out for him. “I was two minutes away from being the goat, but we score, then score in overtime, and everybody forgets about my idiotic move (of going after Scott Hartnell while the Flyers scored their goal),” he said. “Then named to the Olympic team right after ... it’ll go down as one of the most memorable days of my life.” Asked about the coolest moment of the cold day, he said: “I guess one thing I haven’t heard mentioned all that much but I know the players really enjoyed was the (singing of) Sweet Caroline with about eight minutes left. Guys on the team had the idea we should play that during the second TV timeout in the third period of our home games.” He also displayed his sharp wit when someone mentioned he was the tallest of the Team USA members introduced to the Boston crowd. All the other players named were represented by kids wearing jerseys with their names on the back. Thomas reached down to give them low-fives when he was brought out last. “Now I know how Zdeno feels,” cracked Thomas. He also knows how kids can feel. When Thomas was asked by Dave “Voice” Schreiber if he grew up a Tiger fan, the Flint, Mich., native was taken aback. “A Detroit Tiger fan,” said Voice. Thomas laughed. “I thought it was a trick question,” he said. “Me and Tiger (Woods) are close to the same age. Yes I was a Tiger fan. The only year I lived in Detroit was ‘84 when they won the World Series. I got to go watch a couple of games. My mom actually got a Kirk Gibson home run ball that year. Me and my brother ruined it, playing catch, with an overthrow that went into a mud puddle. That’s what kids do.”

JUST SAYIN’

Senators don’t get asked what song they want played when they score, apparently, so don’t be surprised if Kovalev goals are now celebrated to Michael Jackson's Thriller. “I don’t even know what my song is,” said Jarkko Ruutu. “Something by Celine Dion, maybe.” Yeah, that would put already-quiet Senators fans right to sleep.


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