|Sens defenceman Erik Karlsson will not get a rest tonight against the Bruins in Ottawa. (QMI Agency/Files)
OTTAWA - There will be no rest for the Senators’ top players -- at least not just yet.
Erik Karlsson and Filip Kuba were noticeable by their absence for Thursday’s morning skate at Scotiabank Place, but both will play against the Boston Bruins in Ottawa’s final home game at Scotiabank Place.
“It was just an optional practice. One is over 30 years old and one plays 30 minutes,” said coach Paul MacLean.
MacLean said he considered resting players but opted not to take the same route as the Bruins, who aren’t bringing defenceman Zdeno Chara, centre Patrice Bergeron or goaltender Tim Thomas.
The Senators could act differently Saturday against the New Jersey Devils if they lock up the No. 7 spot.
“We internally talked about what we had to do with our schedule and how we felt that was,” said MacLean. “We felt with a game every other night, we had the ability to play people. At this point in time, we’ll play our team.”
MacLean admitted there is a chance guys could get hurt.
“If you let it, it can. It could happen in Game 2, Game 52 or Game 67,” he said. “A lot of our players want to play. They want to play 82 games. They have some things they want to take a lot of pride in, having to play 82 games.”
Goaltender Ben Bishop will start.
“I felt good,” said Bishop, who is returning from a groin injury that has kept him out for 12 days.
Centre Zenon Konopka, winger Bobby Butler and defenceman Matt Gilroy will be scratched.