Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Three games to make up a one-point deficit. That's the situation facing the Binghamton Senators entering the final week of the regular season. Luckily for the B-Sens, being the only team left in the Ottawa organization still playing has its advantages.
With the Senators out of the Stanley Cup playoffs, Jean-Gabriel Pageau, Mark Stone and Cody Ceci all joined Binghamton this week. All three were back on the Arena ice for the first time Tuesday morning.
They don't have much time to readjust to their surroundings though. The B-Sens host Toronto on Wednesday. A win gives Binghamton the division lead with two games to go.
Despite the pressure and quick turnaround, Pageau, Stone and Ceci all said they'll adjust without a problem.
Ceci, Pageau, Stone react to being back with the B-Sens
"It's almost like I've never been up," said Pageau on Tuesday. "I think all the coaches make us comfortable and we're just comfortable with all the players, all our friends, so it's just nice to be back now."
"There's quite a few new faces since I've been here last, but it's good. It's a very comfortable setting to come back to," said Stone. "It's not an easier game, but you feel more comfortable out there every single game."
"I guess I'll see [Wednesday] night how the adjustment is," Ceci added. "Practice is more or less the same wherever you go, but I guess I'll get a taste of it tomorrow."
When it comes to points, the three of them bring a big boost to the injury-depleted B-Sens line-up. Without Mike Hoffman or Stephane Da Costa on the bench, Binghamton loses nearly 20 percent of their points.
Pageau and Stone have combined to tally 79 points in their time with Binghamton this season.
"Just the names alone, it's an added jump in experience, skill and their drive to win," said coach Luke Richardson. "All three of them have an inner drive to them that competes to be the best every night and that's what we want. So the culture is just going to grow."
They are expected to be in the line-up on Wednesday in the game against Toronto. With a win, Binghamton would take a one-point divisional lead into Friday's match-up with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton.
Borowiecki, Da Costa still out of the line-up
Coach Luke Richardson said on Tuesday that both Stephane Da Costa and captain Mark Borowiecki would miss Wednesday's game against Toronto.
Da Costa has been out since being hit with a stick in the face last month in Syracuse. He was back on the ice skating with the team during Tuesday's practice.
Borowiecki was not on the ice for practice Tuesday, but Richardson said he spent time skating on his own before the rest of the team hit the ice.
At goalie, Nathan Lawson will be out for an extended period of time, according to coach. Lawson was shaken up during the second period against Hershey on Friday.