Sens hope for lift as dads join club for trip

BRUCE GARRIOCH, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 1:30 AM ET

The Senators are bringing along extra bodies as they head to Minnesota and Denver Wednesday, hoping that history repeats itself.

While they’re struggling to get victories, the players will have plenty to feel good about as they board their charter and their fathers come along for the ride.

They also hope the team’s second fathers’ trip will lighten the mood — and improve their on-ice fortunes.

Last season, the Senators went 2-0 on the back end of a January road trip with their dads in tow. In their previous six games then, they were 1-5.

Their past six games this season? Also one win and five losses, with two of the latter in extra time.

“It’s always a good time for a father’s trip,” said captain Daniel Alfredsson, who will room with dad Hasse on the three-day swing. “We had a great experience with it last (season), it’s always a lot of fun.

“It’s great to be able to share with your dad what we go through on a daily basis and the way we travel, because most (fathers) have been a big influence on us getting here.”

Coach Cory Clouston noted players of all ages turn to their parents for help.

“(Even for) preparation. If you’re having a tough time, the first person you call is your parents and it doesn’t matter how old you are,” said Clouston. “Last year, we had success when they were with us and we’re hoping we can have the same thing.”

Plenty of blame

Clouston wasn’t just pointing the finger at C Jason Spezza on the Thrashers’ winning goal in overtime Monday. While Spezza turned over the puck, a series of mistakes led to Bryan Little’s goal in a 4-3 Atlanta win. “There was a turnover (by Spezza), the defenceman (Filip Kuba) gambled and the goalie (Brian Elliott) was too deep in the net. Three things right there led

to a goal,” said Clouston. Asked how he envisioned the play, Spezza said: “Ending with the puck going in the back of their net, not ours. I thought (Kuba) was behind me, I didn’t see the backchecker and I left the puck for him.”

Leclaire OK

G Pascal Leclaire, who missed Sunday’s practice with a lower-body injury, was on the ice again Tuesday and should be fine if Clouston elects to give him the start in Minny. “I talked to him a couple of times and we’ll see how he is (Wednesday). He said he was fine, but he looks like he should be ready,” said Clouston, who added it wasn’t a lingering injury ... RW Alex Kovalev wasn’t on the ice because of the flu.


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