Senators place Alex Formenton, Matt Murray in NHL's COVID-19 protocol

Senators head coach D.J. Smith says each individual COVID-19 case is different, but most are doing fine physically, but are dealing with a lot of mental stress and fear, and just want to get through this as a group and go back to playing hockey.

The Ottawa Senators have placed Alex Formenton and goaltender Matt Murray in the NHL’s COVID-19 protocol, the team announced Thursday, bringing the total number of players on the club sidelined for a virus-related reason so far to eight.

Both Murray and Formenton played in the Senators' 3-2 loss to Boston on Tuesday.

An individual entering the protocol does not necessarily mean they have tested positive for the virus. However, the impacts on Ottawa's roster have been stark, and worsened in recent days.

Yesterday, defenceman Josh Brown entered the league's protocols, leading to the cancellation of practice for precautionary reasons.

Forwards Austin Watson, Dylan Gambrell and Connor Brown and defencemen Victor Mete and Nick Holden were all previously placed in COVID protocol as well.

Jack Capuano, an associate coach on the team, is also in the league's protocols.

With the sheer volume of players unable to play, a re-calibration of the team's lines was needed.

Monday's Senators practice was called for precautionary reasons amid the outbreak as well.

The Senators announced on Thursday that forward Andrew Agozzino and defencemen Dillon Heatherington and Lassi Thomson have been recalled from the Belleville Senators, the team's American Hockey League affiliate, to fill the gaps in the roster.

At this time, the Senators' game on Thursday against the Los Angeles Kings is still set to be played.

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