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  • OTTAWA -- For the past month the Ottawa Senators have been focusing on playing better hockey while keeping a close eye on the Eastern Conference playoff race. Cheap Air Jordan 4 Nz . And with one game remaining before the Olympic break, Ottawa finally has a chance to crack the top eight in the conference standings. Ottawa (26-21-11) visits the Boston Bruins (36-16-4) on Saturday afternoon hopeful theyll have a hold on a playoff spot once the dust settles. Trouble is, the Senators are in a very tight race and winning still might not be enough. Ottawa has 63 points heading into Fridays action, one behind Detroit for the final wildcard spot. But the Columbus Blue Jackets also have 63 points and more wins. Columbus faces San Jose on Friday night and a Blue Jackets win will leave Ottawa outside the top eight regardless of Saturdays outcome in Boston. And theres also the matter of the Red Wings, who face the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday night. So should either Detroit or Columbus win, nothing would change for Ottawa. "Its a competitive group of teams thats fighting for that spot," said Ottawa defenceman Marc Methot. "It keeps you honest. I like it. "It makes it competitive and it makes every game that much more important and those are easy games to get up for. Its going to be competitive and I bet its going to get right down to the last week of the season." Ottawa is in playoff contention thanks to posting a 9-3-4 mark so far in 2014. The Senators feel as long as they can remain competitive they should find themselves in good standing at seasons end. "Were playing better hockey, were playing more consistent," said captain Jason Spezza. "A win in Boston would go a long way for us to keep moving in the right direction so its a good opportunity for us to win another game and keep grabbing points." Spezza finds himself on a nice roll, having recorded seven points (one goal, six assists) in his last five games. While the Olympic break might not be ideal, the Senators feel they can take advantage of the practice time and return to action with confidence. "Im real proud of the little stretch of good hockey that weve been playing lately," said Methot. "If theres any way to go into the break its playing properly and good structured hockey and as a team right now were clicking. "You just hope after a little bit of a layover with the break, so to speak, well come back just as strong. Im sure well be putting the work in as soon as were all back together." While holding down a top-eight spot by the Olympic break would be satisfying, centre Zack Smith believes even being within reach is a positive sign. "Weve come a long way in the last month and a half or so," said Smith. "Weve won some big games and theres a few that obviously wed like to have back. "Theyre all emotional games right now so its nice to get points and stay in." But with the teams Ottawa is chasing also winning, that makes the Senators task that much more difficult. "Theres not much separation or breathing room it seems," said Smith. "Everything can change within a few hours so you have to wait and check scores to see whats going on." But one benefit of a tight race is it makes every game important. "Every night youre playing for something and you know the points are that much more important," said Smith. "Its exciting to. "Win or lose you know it has a lot of influence on where your spot is and what position youre in." Should Ottawa be unable to crack the top eight by the break, Smith said there will still be plenty of time for the team to make a move. "When it comes down to it, theres still a lot of games left after the break," said Smith. "Its still a long season. "If we dont win a game or say we lose two games in a row were still not out of it by any means. Its good for motivation." NOTES -- Craig Anderson will start in goal against Boston . . . Forward Stephane DaCosta was re-assigned to the AHLs Binghamton Senators on Friday. In eight games, DaCosta had three goals and an assists . . . Defenceman Chris Phillips will miss his seventh straight game with a lower-body injury Saturday. Phillips skated on his own prior to practice . . . Defenceman Erik Karlsson was given a maintenance day Friday . . . Head coach Paul MacLean shuffled all of his lines at practice. But he said not much should be read into it as he was just having some fun . . . Most of the Senators said theyd be keeping a close eye on the Olympic action but also were looking forward to having a little down time. Cheap Authentic Jordan 4 Nz .  Rooneys latest piece of football genius lost in the furore which now stalks David Moyes, and the man who gave the Manchester United striker his start as a 16-year old at Goodison Park back in 2002. Jordan 4 Retro Nz .Voegele will next play Anna Schmiedlova of Slovakia, who saved 10 of 16 break points to defeat Annika Beck of Germany 7-6 (6), 6-4.Also, Marina Erakovic of New Zealand defeated eighth-seeded Caroline Garcia of France 6-2, 4-6, 6-4.TORONTO - The Raptors locker room was unnervingly quiet Friday evening, about how you would expect it after the implausible ending that sealed the teams fate in a double-overtime disaster. In the back corner sat an inconsolable John Salmons, the elephant in the room. Facing his locker, Salmons slouched forward in his chair, his head down in his hands and a long black towel draped over him. One by one his teammates came over to comfort him, patting him on the back and offering words of encouragement. He didnt move. He remained in that position, perfectly still for over 30 minutes. They win as a team and they lose as a team, but Salmons felt the brunt of it on this night. What seemed like a sure victory late in the second overtime period began to unravel when an exceptional player made an exceptional shot. With the Raptors up by eight, 49 seconds away from an improbable victory and season-sweep of the 50-win Oklahoma City Thunder, Kevin Durant banked in a 27-foot three-point jumper. Following another Thunder three - this one courtesy veteran assassin Derek Fisher - Salmons threw away an inbounds pass on the baseline, only to break up Durants runner and get sent to the line. With less than 10 seconds remaining, now up two, Salmons clanked both free throws, paving the way for the leagues leading scorer to do what he does best. Break hearts. "Great players make great plays," Dwane Casey said of Durant, moments after his 31-foot pull-up dagger gave the Thunder a 119-118 victory. Since coming over from Sacramento in December, Salmons has been praised for his poise and veteran savvy late in games, many of which hes helped them win. This was not his finest hour. "Hes a veteran (and) in those situations youve got to believe in him, that hes going to make those free throws," Casey said of Salmons, playing in place of Terrence Ross, who left the game with a hip contusion. "We had to go with John in that situation. Hes been one of our best defenders in that situation, but its not just one guy." The Raptors, now 1-6 in OT this season, need to close out these types of games. Salmons needs to be better down the stretch, they know it and so does he. It was three months ago, almost to this day that the Raptors pulled off their most impressive win of the season, a 104-98 victory in Oklahoma City. Coming off an OT win in Dallas a couple days prior and trailing by as many as 10 in the fourth, Toronto shocked the Thunder, who were undefeated at home at the time. "It helped kick start us going forward," Casey said of that night. "It helped our chemistry, it helped our togetherness it helped blend in the old and the new guys together." It would not have happened if not for Salmons. The 12-year vet spearheaded his new teams comeback, scoring nine points in the final quarter. After the game his teammates raved about his leadership and calming effect on the floor. Kyle Lowry gave him the game ball. Like Patrick Paterson - sttill out with an injured elbow - Greivis Vasquez, who was spectacular before fouling out Friday, and Chuck Hayes, Salmons fingerprints are all over the teams resurgence and that should not be forgotten, internally or externally. Air Jordan 4 Nz Cheap. The Raptors proved something to themselves in OKC that night. They proved that they belonged. Three months later, clinging onto the Easts third seed and top spot in the Atlantic Division, they fell just short of proving something to everybody else. For whatever reason the franchise and its fan base has been battered by losses of the devastating variety to the point in which theyre almost immune to them. Toronto has lost 10 straight overtime games at home, an NBA record. "It does (hurt)," Casey admitted, "but we cant let it." "We cant let this game (give us a) hangover. (Its) a big learning experience for our guys. Youre playing with one of the top teams in the league, one of the top players... and you give yourself a chance to win in (double) overtime." KD the magnificent It seems impossible to fathom that Friday once started off as a slow night for Durant. The Thunder forward made just three of his 12 first-half shots but once Russell Westbrook went down in the third quarter - colliding with Lowry and spraining his surgically repaired right knee - Durant, with the help of some generous officiating, completely took over. Durant scored 51 and finished with 12 rebounds and seven assists, getting to the line 19 times and extending his streak of 25 or more points to 34 games, longest since Michael Jordans 40-game run in 1986-87. Amirs memorable game Playing in his 500th career contest, Amir Johnson nearly willed his team to victory. The Raptors forward recorded a double-double of 25 points and 12 rebounds, connecting on 12 of his 19 shots in 50 minutes of action. He also spent the bulk of the second half guarding Durant, per his own request made after Ross exited with the hip injury. "It was tough, man," he said, asked about defending the leagues leading scorer. "Hes my height, out there shooting from half court. Theres not too much you can do but double team that." "He did a great job," Casey added. "I felt for him. Hes hurt. He was all over him, draped over him. (Durant) made a tough shot. Theres nothing Amir did wrong." The stat For the first time since Jan. 13, 2013, the Raptors had four players score 20 or more points. Along with Johnson, DeMar DeRozan led the Raptors with 33 points, hitting all but one of his 16 free throws, while Lowry added 25 and Vasquez scored 21 off the bench. The quote "We couldnt go another overtime," Durant said. "I had to live with whatever happened. You had to get out of there. I wasnt trying to go to another overtime. I pulled up for it, it looked good when it left my hands and God guided that thing to the basket, man. That was the craziest game Ive ever been a part of." Wholesale China Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys Wholesale Authentic JerseysNike NFL Jerseys China Wholesale Nike Basketball Jerseys Hockey Jerseys China Supply Baseball Jerseys Football Jerseys Sale Authentic College Jerseys MLB Jerseys China Stitched Soccer Jerseys Cheap Jerseys From China Cheap Nike Jerseys ' ' '
      January 10, 2019 7:15 PM CST
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