Ryan Shannon will finally get a chance to compete for a job Friday at Madison Square Garden.
Now, he has to make the most of his opportunity ... and quick.
The Senators winger has finally been medically cleared to play after being held out for precautionary reasons when he took a check from Jay Rosehill in the club’s first exhibition game — against the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Shannon was troubled by concussion issues last year so the Senators weren’t going to take any chances. They gave Shannon rest and put him through the usual battery of tests before clearing him to play against the Rangers.
“I’m focused. I’m ready to go,” said Shannon, who has played only two pre-season games. “I’m 100%. I took all the tests and the protocols that were necessary. It was precautionary and it was because of my history that it took so long for me.”
Being a spectator has been tough on Shannon. He came to camp prepared to compete for playing time and hasn’t been able to get a chance.
“If this had happened to me two years ago, I would have probably felt not prepared to play right now,” said Shannon. “I would have felt rushed and had a lot of anxiety going into the game. All I can do is bring what I can bring.”
“If he plays well and someone doesn’t play well he could definitely move up the depth chart,” said Senators coach Cory Clouston.
This and that
Senators C Mike Fisher had a sore neck and didn’t skate after taking a hit from behind from Colby Armstrong in the dying minutes of Thursday’s 4-3 loss to the Leafs. He isn’t scheduled to play against the Rangers and it’s not known if he’ll suit up in the final exhibition game Saturday, either. “I was confused, I thought (the Leafs) were getting the hitting-from-behind penalty and it ended up (being the penalty that the Leafs scored the winning goal on). He’ll be okay. He kind of kinked his neck a little. He went head-first into the boards,” said Clouston ... The Senators were scheduled to fly to New York Thursday, but the flight was cancelled because of bad weather in the area. They will leave Friday morning ... After taking Sunday off, the Senators will hold an open practice in Petawawa Monday. The players will then visit CFB Petawawa for team- building activities.
Off the glass
The Senators were still talking about RW Alex Kovalev’s fight against Toronto D Francois Beauchemin Wednesday. “A little surprised, actually, but great. He got mad. He stuck up for his teammates. He defended himself. I don’t want to see him do it too often, but I think it was a pretty good statement by him,” said Clouston ... The Senators are hoping D Filip Kuba, who is out with a broken leg, will return by the end of October.
Around the boards
It’s going to be a tough few days for blueliner Jared Cowen. He will get another chance to show what he can do against the Rangers Friday and the Senators will decide whether they’re going to send him back to the WHL’s Spokane Chiefs. “They don’t really tell you a lot so you don’t really know what the coaching staff is thinking,” said Cowen, the club’s top pick in 2009. “Hopefully, I’ll be able to find out what’s going on here soon.” ... The Senators spent a lot of time working on the power play in practice. The club went 0-for-5 vs. the Leafs. “We didn’t do as well as we expect (against Toronto),” said Senators D Sergei Gonchar, signed in the off-season. “You have to have chemistry, you have to help each other out, you have to have a shooting mentality and you have to have a lot of skill. We have a lot of skill here.”