The same thing happened before 5 p.m. local time starts last week in the home rink of the Anaheim Ducks.
The Ducks had a 9:30 a.m. practice and the Senators could have gone on the ice afterwards, but coach Bryan Murray said that would have left insufficient time for his players to properly rest for the big game.
Murray said he would have taken 7 a.m. ice time for his players but “they wouldn’t let us go before them.”
“I thought the NHL would give that allowance to us but that wasn’t the case,” said Murray. “So, yes, we wanted to practice (Wednesday) morning.
“We would even go out with the officials and play shinny and they wouldn’t let us do that.”
TIGHT CONNECTION: Scott and Rob Niedermayer of the Ducks skated into Game 5 of the championship series Wednesday night trying to become the first brothers to win the Stanley Cup together since Brent and Duane Sutter in 1983 with the New York Islanders.
BAD MOVIES: Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson and his teammates have been watching bad movies, and they are in them. In reviewing game videos, sans popcorn, they’ve seen all the mistakes they’ve made in the championship series.
“We feel we haven’t played a real good game for 60 minutes in the finals,” said Alfredsson. “We’re looking at some tape and it’s pretty obvious that we give them what they get.”
GOOD AT HOME: The Ducks haven’t just been good at home during the playoffs, they’ve been great. They were 9-2 in Honda Center going into Game 5 of the championship series Wednesday night.
Since the start of the 2003 playoffs, they were 22-7 at home. In addition, they were 7-0 in series-clinching games at home including 3-0 this year.
CONTENTED COACH: Ducks coach Randy Carlyle was asked if he got a good sleep on the eve of Game 5 with his team just one win away from hoisting the Stanley Cup.
“Slept like a baby,” said Carlyle.
KUNITZ RETURNS: Ducks winger Chris Kunitz of Regina returned to the lineup for Game 5. Kunitz sat out eight games with a broken hand and was back for Game 3 only to suffer an abdominal bruise that forced him to miss Game 4.
McAMMOND STAYS OUT: Dean McAmmond remained out of Ottawa’s starting 20-man lineup. McAmmond was hurt in Game 3 when he was elbowed in the head by Chris Pronger, who received a one-game suspension.