SNAPSHOT: Victor Mete in COVID-19 protocol as Ottawa Senators roster continues to grow

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Victor Mete’s absence meant defender Erik Brannstrom was making his season debut.

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Changes were needed for the Ottawa Senators on Tuesday night at TD Garden.

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In this case, the coach Dj smith didn’t have much of a choice to fill out the roster card.

Victor Mete became the fifth player added to the non-active COVID-19 protocol list by the Senators on Tuesday afternoon. He was not on the ice for morning practice before the club faced the Bruins and Smith told reporters in Boston the defenseman was being tested for the virus.

Mete joined a list that already included attackers Connor Brown, Austin Watson and Dylan gambrell , with a veteran defender Nick holden and associate coach Jack Capuano. All six will need to undergo two negative COVID-19 tests before they can resume their activities.

The Senators won’t know until Wednesday whether Brown and Gambrell will be available to play against the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday at home. There have been cases where players initially recorded a positive on a COVID-19 test and then were cleared days later when they returned two negatives.

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To make matters worse, the Senators also have an influenza virus unrelated to COVID-19 running through the room. The club had to call back the keeper Philippe gustavsson from Belleville to dress as a backup in Boston because Anton Forsberg participated in morning training and was unable to dress afterwards.

Winger Tyler Ennis missed Saturday’s flu game.

“Outside of COVID-19, we’ve had a viral thing in our bedroom and we’ve got a lot of guys who just haven’t been the same,” Smith said. “A lot of guys have been in bad weather; some were able to play the last two games and some not.

Mete’s absence meant blueliner Erik Brannstrom made his debut in the season after being called up by the club’s AHL affiliate in Belleville on Sunday night. He was paired alongside Artem Zub during morning practice and Brannstrom dressed for his 64th game with the club.

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Michael del zotto also returned to replace Holden.

MAKE YOUR BEGINNINGS

All eyes were on the winger Egor Sokolov In Boston.

He adjusted for his first NHL game against the Bruins after being called up when Brown was placed on COVID-19 protocol. Sokolov, 21, was a No.61 pick in the 2020 NHL Draft and has come a long way to make it to the league.

Sokolov has two goals and six points in nine games for Belleville and is thrilled to have the opportunity.

“It’s a dream come true. Since I was a kid, I have dreamed of playing in the NHL, ”Sokolov said before the game. “It was a pretty quick turnaround and I’m delighted to be here just to get a feel for what the NHL is like and to be with the guys.”

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He skated with the second unit of the power play in the morning as he skated on the fourth line with Parker Kelly and Logan shaw . Sokolov’s parents were unable to make it to the ice rink from their home in Russia, but his foster mother, Ashley ryan , from his days with the Cape Breton Eagles, made the trip.

Sokolov and winger Drake batherson were roommates in Cape Breton during the 2017-18 campaign.

“I just have to be myself there,” Sokolov said. “Don’t be nervous and play my game. I play hockey for fun and I have to enjoy the moment because it’s something I remember.

“It’s pretty cool playing against the Boston Bruins. It doesn’t matter which team it is, but Boston is pretty cool playing their first game in the NHL.

Naturally, Sokolov’s teammates were happy for him because he worked hard.

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“We are really delighted that he is making his debut,” said the captain. Brady Tkachuk . “It’s definitely exciting to see a first game in the NHL and it’s special for him. It gives us energy and we’re really happy for him because he’s put in so much work to get where he’s at. It will certainly be rewarding.

Belleville coach Troy Mann was delighted to see worker Sokolov getting the chance.

“He’s made progress, but to say he’s completely ready for the NHL, until you have a player in that scenario, it’s hard to say if he’s ready or not. It will be a special time for him, but I think as an organization we think he needs more seasoning, ”Mann said on the club’s website on Tuesday.

“Compare him to a guy like Drake Batherson who spent a couple of times riding, with wide-eyed looks, before he became a full-time NHL player. This is a great opportunity for Egor, we are really happy for him and time will tell how ready he will be or how close he is.

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THE LAST WORDS

After spending two seasons with the Senators, the Bruins defenseman Mike reilly got the chance to face his former teammates for the first time since moving to Boston on last season’s trade deadline.

He signed with Boston as UFA this summer.

“Nothing but good things to say about Ottawa and my time there,” said Reilly. “DJ Smith was great to me. They have a great group of guys there. They are young, but I think DJ Smith is trying to create a culture there. It was great to be a part of it and I’m still pretty close to a lot of the guys on the team. I’m glad I stopped there. It helped my game a lot.

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Twitter: @sungarrioch

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