Mark Stone could get quite a welcome to the NHL.
The Ottawa Senators rookie winger was on the ice at Madison Square Garden for the morning skate today and coach Paul MacLean didn't rule out the possiblity of the 19-year-old prospect skating in Game 5.
Stone, a Winnipeg native and sixth-round pick in the 2010 NHL entry draft, skated on the fourth line during the optional skate. If he's in the lineup, MacLean said he could help the club's power play which is 2-for-15 in the series.
"I was pretty nervous going out there even just for the skate this morning and looking at the building," said Stone. "I'm just excited to have the opportunity. You look around, you get used to the building and then you just keep playing from there."
The Senators won't have winger Jesse Winchester, who is out with an upper body injury. Captain Daniel Alfredsson is also out with a concussion he suffered in Game 2 but did skate this morning in Ottawa.
SCORING FROM SPEZZA
All eyes will be on Jason Spezza tonight on Broadway.
The Senators need him to break out.
Tied 2-2 in this first round series with the New York Rangers, the Senators have gotten timely scoring in the two OT victories they've secured, but they could use offence from their top centre if they're going to win.
Spezza said the first four games have been a battle and he doesn't expect anything different in Game 5.
"It's a tight series. Both teams play really tight. It's been desperate and there's been a lot of shot blocks," said Spezza. "There's not a lot of free chances and open ice. You have to earn everything you get.
"We've done a good job creating a lot. Now, we have to put some (goals) in."
Rangers coach John Tortorella, who his usual bright and shiny self with the media, is studying one change.
He has broken up the duo of Brad Richards and Marian Gaborik to try to get more offence. Ryan Callahan is now playong on the right side of Richards while Gaborik has moved to play with Derek Stepan.
This isn't the first time Tortorella has tried this move. He has to do something to get the Rangers to score more goals. Richards and Gaborik haven't been getting it done.
"It really didn't work (with Gaborik and Richards split up) during the season," said Tortorella. "I thought in the third period (in Ottawa) they (Richards and Callahan) played the best period of hockey we've seen in this series.
"I don't know if I'm going to use that tonight but they were probably our most effective line."
Brandon Dubinsky-Brad Richards-Ryan Callahan
Artem Anisimov-Derek Stepan-Marian Gaborik
Ruslan Fedotenko-Brian Boyle-Brandon Prust
Chris Kreider-John Mitchell-Mike Rupp
Ryan McDonagh-Dan Girardi
Marc Staal-Anton Stralman
Michael Del Zotto-Stu Bickel
Colin Greening-Jason Spezza-Milan Michalek
Nick Foligno-Kyle Turris-Bobby Butler
Erik Condra-Zack Smith-Chris Neil
Jim O'Brien-Zenon Konopka-Mark Stone
Filip Kuba-Erik Karlsson
Jared Cowen-Sergei Gonchar
Chris Phillips-Matt Carkner
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