Elliott gets start tonight

Sens goalie Brian Elliott will, as expected, get the start in Game 1 versus the Pens tonight. (QMI...

Sens goalie Brian Elliott will, as expected, get the start in Game 1 versus the Pens tonight. (QMI Agency file)

BRUCE GARRIOCH, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 2:35 PM ET

PITTSBURGH -- It's time for Brian Elliott and the Senators to let actions speak louder than words.

Elliott will get his first playoff start tonight as the Senators begin the difficult task of trying to knock out the defending champs Wednesday night (7 p.m.) at Mellon Arena.

As Game 1 of the Eastern Conference quarter-final gets under way, the Senators aren’t planning any significant changes to their game as they prepare to try knock off the Penguins. The best-of-seven series continues with game two in Pittsburgh Friday before shifting back to Scotiabank Place Sunday.

“Brian has shown in the past he can be very successful in the playoffs at the NCAA championships,” said coach Cory Clouston. “We talk about experience, but we’ve also seen examples in goaltending where young guys come in and take a team right to the final.

“Whether he wins a Conn Smythe or a Stanley Cup, there are numerous situations where we’ve seen that. Most recently a guy like Cam Ward, but you can go back over the years and there’s a lot of goalies who have come in and played very, very well. We expect Brian to play well. We’re going to give him a lot of support and stay with our structured game.”

The Penguins aren’t worried about defending their title.

“We are now know we are going head-to-head with the Ottawa Senators to go onto the next round. That is clear as day to our players,” said Pittsburgh coach Dan Bylsma. “We know we’re not competing for the Stanley Cup right now. We’re competing to get four wins against the Ottawa Senators.”

The Senators are confident.

“The way we’ve been playing has a lot to do with how we’ve won games,” said winger Nick Foligno. “Mostly it has just been a structured game and we feel we’ve handled ourselves well in wins. You get confidence by playing the right way.”


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