During the preseason, there was hope that either or would step up their game and grab the starting goaltending job for the .
That never happened.
Instead, Leclaire was 1-2-0 with a 4.43 goals-against average and a .856 save percentage in the preseason and Elliott was only slightly better at 1-1-1 with a 3.24 goals-against average and a .882 save percentage.
Hardly the kind of numbers to excite Coach.
“To be honest, we wanted both of them to play better,” Clouston said, “and we wanted one of them to step it up. We didn’t get that, but we’re still confident we can have at least one guy ready to go to start the season.”
With Leclaire set for free agency after this season, he must realize the implications this season holds for the rest of his career. The pressure is on for him to establish himself as a starting goalie, or he risks an uncertain future with NHL teams not wanting to sign him next summer.
If Leclaire is feeling this pressure, he's not showing it. Instead, he says he feels comfortable with how his game is progressing.
“It’s totally out of my control,” said Leclaire. “I feel good and I’m ready to go if they want me to play. If not, I’ll just wait for it, and when I get a chance to play, I’ll be ready.”
“I'm not going to tell you when our decision is made,” Clouston said. “You will know on Friday morning who we start.”
Until Friday morning then, the Ottawa Senators' fans wait anxiously.
More Sens Stories
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- Here's another season preview… from Miami - Miami Herald
- The Sens spend two days at Canadian Forces Base Petawawa, experiencing military exercises and signing autographs - Yahoo Sports
- Ottawa's 2009 first-round draft pick Jared Cowen sent back to Spokane a victim of the numbers - The Spokesman Review
- For a change of pace, here's a 2010-11 season preview of the Sens AHL affiliate, the Binghamton Senators - Hockeys Future
- Defenceman David Hale wasn't given much attention, but he quietly played his way onto the Senators with a strong preseason - Ottawa Citizen
- Keeping a watch on our prospects and who are making an impression in Binghamton - Silver Seven
- Is Bill Guerin the player the Sens have always needed? - Sens Army Blog
- Pascal Leclaire needs some time to build his game and establish himself as the starting goaltender - Black Aces
- Taking a look at the Sens depth chart - SenSay
- Entering into his contract year, Jarkko Ruutu isn’t worried about his future but he hopes it includes an extended stay in Ottawa - Ottawa Sun
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Christopher Smith runs senspedia.com, an Ottawa Senators fan site.