GARRIOCH: One-on-one with coach D.J. Smith as the Ottawa Senators open the season against the Leafs

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“What I need to see is that these young guys are going to continue to get better.”

Author of the article:

Bruce Garrioch

Publishing date:

Oct 13, 2021  •  47 minutes ago  •  4 minute read  •  Join the conversation

Senators head coach D.J. Smith Photo by Tony Caldwell /Postmedia Article content

Bruce Garrioch

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Ottawa Sun

Nothing like a Battle of Ontario to make the heart grow fonder.

The Ottawa Senators wrapped up last season with a 9-2-1 record down the stretch and, as they prepare to face the Toronto Maple Leafs in the opener Thursday night at the Canadian Tire Centre, the club is hopeful it can take another step in the right direction this season.

Nobody is predicting they’ll make the playoffs, but if the young players can show maturity and the club eventually gets restricted free-agent winger Brady Tkachuk under contract, the Senators should be difficult to play against every night.

Training camp is behind the Sens and now the hard work begins with what’s going to be a busy NHL season.

The likes of Tim Stuetzle and Josh Norris are heading into their sophomore seasons after taking part in the 56-game North Division schedule last year, while Drake Batherson is about to start his third full year. Winger Alex Formenton and centre Shane Pinto…

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