NHL

Playoffs in sight for Senators, who host Coyotes

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Ottawa Senators general manager Pierre Dorion sent his club a simple message with a flurry of activity at the NHL's March 1 trade deadline: go win.

Since Dorion acquired forwards Alex Burrows, Tommy Wingels and Viktor Stalberg and defenseman Jyrki Jokipakka for the stretch drive, win is all the Senators have done. Despite the absence of center Kyle Turris, Ottawa improved to 4-0 since the deadline with 5-2 win over the Stars on Wednesday in Dallas.

The win pulled Ottawa within four points of Montreal for the Atlantic Division lead with two games in hand as the Senators prepare to face the Arizona Coyotes on Thursday at Gila River Arena, but Ottawa is focused on more immediate goals than division titles and postseason matchups.

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"We're not looking at who we're going to face in the playoffs, we're trying to focus on our team, and with all those new guys here, we're trying to find our game," Senators center Derick Brassard told the Ottawa Citizen. "It's been a lot of fun. They've brought some really good energy to our group. They've been scoring and doing everything."

None of the Senators' trade-deadline moves would be viewed as major acquisitions, but Dorion believes the sum of those additions could have major implications.

"I feel we're a better hockey team than we were a few weeks ago," Dorion told the Citizen. "Our first goal is to make the playoffs, we'll see what happens after, but I think we've addressed a lot of our needs."

The Senators may have to face Arizona without Turris, a former Coyote, who has been dealing with an injured finger for an unspecified period of time. Coach Guy Boucher said Turris may not play on the Senators' entire three-game road trip, which concludes on Saturday in Denver.

Mike Condon is expected to start in goal for Ottawa on the back end of this back-to-back set of games. Left winger Clarke MacArthur (concussion), right winger Chris Neil (finger) and right winger Bobby Ryan (finger) are all on injured reserve.

The Coyotes will also enter the game shorthanded. Center Brad Richardson (broken right tibia and fibula) is still on injured reserve, while defenseman Kevin Connauton (upper body) and center Alexander Burmistrov (concussion) are day to day. Coach Dave Tippett said Wednesday "both are still a little ways away."

Arizona has dropped five of its last seven games after Sunday's 2-1 loss to the Carolina Hurricanes in Glendale. After a promising run that preceded the trade deadline, Tippett has seen his team revert back to some bad habits.

"If you want to be a winning team you've got to take care of the puck," Tippett said. "We turn the puck over so much. We shoot ourselves in the foot.

"When you turn the puck over, that means you have it and you give it to them. If you're pressured you make a good play with it, maybe a safe play, and if you're not pressured, make a good play. We just don't have enough of those good plays right now."