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by Todd Anderson
(10/30/2006)


After the first 10 games of the 2006-07 season, the Ottawa Senators’ penalty-killing success ranks as one of the best in the NHL. Heading into tomorrow’s game against the Montreal Canadiens, only the Minnesota Wild (92.9) have a better success rate than Ottawa’s 92.3 per cent efficiency in killing off penalties.

“I’m pretty confident going into a kill,” says Senators head coach Bryan Murray. “The first thing I think is (Chris) Kelly and (Antoine) Vermette. (Getting them on the ice) is my first reaction.”

Last season, Kelly and Vermette teamed up as one of the best penalty-killing tandems in the NHL. Not only were the pair successful in keeping their opponent’s top stars in check, the duo also provided it’s fair share of goals while playing short-handed. Kelly says it’s all about determination.

“As a five-man unit, with you’re goalie, you have to go out and play hard within the system. That’s how we’ve had success.”

Senators goaltender Ray Emery, who is scheduled to start in goal when the Senators visit the Canadiens tomorrow, says although his team hasn’t scored short-handed yet this season, he expects that to change.

“Last year we were dangerous out there on the penalty kill with our speed and talent. This year is no different.”

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