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The Sens have made their final roster cuts before starting their regular season in Raleigh, Carolina. The Senators finished their preseason with a 6 and 2 record after falling to the Montreal Canadiens, 6-4, tonight. Following the game, we gained some insight into who has likely made the NHL roster, with some surprises. With these cuts, we now have a solid idea of the lines the team plans to start the year with.
Parker Kelly Gets on the Board
The game’s first goal for the Senators came off the stick of Parker Kelly. The play started with Nikolas Matinpalo holding the puck on the blue line. Matinpalo then fired a wrist shot toward the net, which was steered to the corner by the Canadiens’ netminder. Tarun Fizer, the newest member of the Belleville Senators, found the puck along the goal line and fired it toward the crease. The rebound came off the pads of the Canadiens’ goaltender, and a battle ensued for the puck. Parker Kelly found it before Sean Monahan and managed to squeak it high blocker side, tying the game at 1-1 just under 2 minutes in.
Dominik Kubalik Brings the Sens Within 1
After a pair of Canadiens’ goals extended the lead to 3-1, Kubalik closed the gap for the Senators. The play started in the defensive zone with Travis Hamonic breaking up a Canadiens’ rush. Hamonic moved the puck to Erik Brannstrom, who began transitioning the play the other way. Brannstrom used his high-level speed to create a three-on-two rush. Ridly Greig drove through the center of the ice, drawing attention from the Canadiens’ defense and leaving Brannstrom and Kubalik with a 2-on-1. Brannstrom made a slick pass across to Kubalik, who one-timed the puck high-blocker side past the Canadiens’ goaltender, bringing the score to 3-2.
Roby Järventie Continues Rolling
Roby Järventie continued his incredible preseason with yet another goal. The play started with Jacob Larsson in the defensive zone, lobbing a pass out to center ice. The puck was controlled by Josh Bailey, who found Järventie cutting through the center of the ice. Bailey got the puck past the Canadiens’ defender, sending Järventie alone on a breakaway. Järventie used a quick head fake to throw off the Canadiens’ goaltender before sliding the puck five-hole to tie the game.
Ridly Greig Gets a Freebie
The game’s final goal for the Senators came off the stick of Ridly Greig. The goals won’t come much easier than this for Greig, but he still deserves credit for actively following the play. After gathering the puck in the neutral zone, Parker Kelly lobbed a backhand toward the Canadiens’ net. A miscommunication occurred between the Canadiens’ goaltender and defenceman, causing the puck to pop out front. Greig was the first player there and quickly shot past the unprepared netminder.
The Senators, unfortunately, went on to lose this game 6-4 after giving up some late offence to the Canadiens.
Notable Roster Cuts
Following the game, the Senators announced the final cuts ahead of the season opener, including the following names:
- M. Sogaard
- D. Heatherington
- J. Larsson
- N. Martinpalo
- R. Järventie
- Z. Ostapchuk
- E. Sokolov
- T. Fizer
- B. Imama
Tarun Fizer and Zack MacEwen were unfortunately injured today. Fizer suffered a lower-body injury, while MacEwen’s was an upper-body injury. Currently, there is no indication of how long each player will be out.
Among the players cut, one quite surprising name is Roby Järventie. After scoring four goals in five preseason games, it seemed that the Senators would give Järventie an NHL spot. He did everything the team could have asked for, and with neither Josh Norris nor Shane Pinto ready to play, it felt like he could provide some offence.
As for the rest of the players sent to Belleville, there are no real surprises.
With the remaining names on the roster, we now know what the opening night lineup should look like. The top six will be as expected, except Ridly Greig will likely start as the second-line center as long as Norris and Pinto remain out of the lineup. On the third line, it looks like the Senators will roll with Dominik Kubalik, Mathieu Joseph, and Rourke Chartier. The fourth line appears to be Parker Kelly with Mark Kastelic and Zack MacEwen, assuming he is healthy and ready to go. The defence and goaltending should align with early projections, with the tandem of Korpisalo and Forsberg and the bottom pairing of Erik Brannstrom and Travis Hamonic.
Get ready Sens fans! The season is less than one week away!
You forgot about Smejkal, he’s been solid all camp.
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