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New Max Talbot blog: On playing Ottawa, the playoffs and injuries for both teams

It looks like Max Talbot will not be outdone by Marc-Andre Fleury (hey, a little friendly competition never hurt anyone).  Shortly after MAF posted his musings up on, Max followed up with a post of his own.  Ottawa, the injuries, playoffs - all topics addressed in Max's latest installment.  The only one busier than Max and MAF these days is, once again, Becky.  So thanks to her (as always) for providing another outstanding translation.

Take the jump to see what Max has to say.



I can’t wait…We can’t wait!

For the third time in four years, we are going to face the Ottawa Senators in the playoffs, and I can’t deny that there is a rivalry between the teams.

During the 2006-2007 playoffs, we were eliminated in five games by the Senators, but we got our revenge in 2007-2008 with a victory in four games.

We have played a lot of hockey against them the last few years, and we even started our season against them last year in Europe.  In short, they know us very well, and it’s the same thing for us, so I think it should be a good series of hockey.

This season, we have a record of two wins and two losses against them, and I believe that they’ll be up to the challenge of the playoffs, since they want to prove that they can beat us.  If you look at the predictions, we are favored to win it, but that means nothing at all.  They are aiming at the same objective we are, so there’s no question of taking them lightly.

Just like us, the Senators made some good deals at the trade deadline, bringing in Andy Sutton and Matt Cullen.

You might wonder what the ambiance is like within the team compared to last year prior to starting our road to the Stanley Cup.  I can tell you that we are well prepared and cannot wait for it to start!  We have played 49 playoff games over the last three years, so we have the necessary experience and know what awaits us.

Everyone knows that it will not be easy, but we are ready.  It’s true that we have had a somewhat inconsistent season, but the guys really can’t wait. The players are very excited at the idea of starting this adventure on Wednesday.

When you look at the goalie situation in this match-up, Marc-André (Fleury) possesses great experience, while Brian Elliot has never played in the playoffs.  We talked about this yesterday; we have to put pressure on him right from the start.  As for Marc-André, I can assure you that he is ready to play.

The injury situation is always an important topic, and the absence of Alex Kovalev takes away one of their weapons.  Kovalev is always very dangerous, especially on the power play.  All the same, I am convinced that several of their players are ready to take on the challenge of moving up to the first or second line.  They won’t stop playing just because of an injury!

On our side, Chris Kunitz, Matt Cooke, and Brooks Orpik are being evaluated daily, but they’re all doing well, and they practiced with us Tuesday morning, which is a good sign for our team.

Oh yes, I can’t wait!  I’ll say it again: I can’t wait for the playoffs.  Ever since I returned to playing [following shoulder surgery], I’ve been dreaming of the playoffs and waiting impatiently for the second season.  I have had a really up-and-down year, and now everything starts over at zero, which is very positive.

Once again, I’m hungry to prove some things in the playoffs!

As has been the case the last few years, I will take some weeks off from my column in order to concentrate on the playoffs.

I will get back to you this summer, and I thank you for your encouragement.  I’ll end by wishing you all an excellent playoff season.