Senators' Jason Spezza expected to play in opener

Injured Senators captain Jason Spezza is expected to play in Ottawa's season opener in Buffalo....

Injured Senators captain Jason Spezza is expected to play in Ottawa's season opener in Buffalo. (Kevin King/QMI Agency)

DON BRENNAN, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 2:10 PM ET

OTTAWA - Jason Spezza missed another practice with his teammates Saturday, but the Senators have no concern about his availability for the regular season opener.

Coach Paul MacLean did reveal for the first time that the injury his No. 1 centre is dealing with is a “minor groin” problem and said Spezza will not play in Sunday’s final pre-season game against the visiting New York Islanders.

Spezza was to skate on his own after Saturday’s practice at Canadian Tire Centre.

“We are managing to get him to Oct. 4 and be ready to play,” MacLean said of Game 1 on the regular season schedule in Buffalo. “So at this point, that’s what we’re doing. We’re just making sure he’s ready to play the opener, which is way more important than any exhibition game.”

Spezza, who had surgery on his back and knee last season, has suited up in only two pre-season games. His last was Sept. 18.


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