OTTAWA -- For the past month the Ottawa Senators have been focusing on playing better hockey while keeping a close eye on the Eastern Conference playoff race. And with one game remaining before the Olympic break, Ottawa finally has a chance to crack the top eight in the conference standings. Ottawa (26-21-11) visits the Boston Bruins (36-16-4) on Saturday afternoon hopeful theyll have a hold on a playoff spot once the dust settles. Trouble is, the Senators are in a very tight race and winning still might not be enough. Ottawa has 63 points heading into Fridays action, one behind Detroit for the final wildcard spot. But the Columbus Blue Jackets also have 63 points and more wins. Columbus faces San Jose on Friday night and a Blue Jackets win will leave Ottawa outside the top eight regardless of Saturdays outcome in Boston. And theres also the matter of the Red Wings, who face the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday night. So should either Detroit or Columbus win, nothing would change for Ottawa. "Its a competitive group of teams thats fighting for that spot," said Ottawa defenceman Marc Methot. "It keeps you honest. I like it. "It makes it competitive and it makes every game that much more important and those are easy games to get up for. Its going to be competitive and I bet its going to get right down to the last week of the season." Ottawa is in playoff contention thanks to posting a 9-3-4 mark so far in 2014. The Senators feel as long as they can remain competitive they should find themselves in good standing at seasons end. "Were playing better hockey, were playing more consistent," said captain Jason Spezza. "A win in Boston would go a long way for us to keep moving in the right direction so its a good opportunity for us to win another game and keep grabbing points." Spezza finds himself on a nice roll, having recorded seven points (one goal, six assists) in his last five games. While the Olympic break might not be ideal, the Senators feel they can take advantage of the practice time and return to action with confidence. "Im real proud of the little stretch of good hockey that weve been playing lately," said Methot. "If theres any way to go into the break its playing properly and good structured hockey and as a team right now were clicking. "You just hope after a little bit of a layover with the break, so to speak, well come back just as strong. Im sure well be putting the work in as soon as were all back together." While holding down a top-eight spot by the Olympic break would be satisfying, centre Zack Smith believes even being within reach is a positive sign. "Weve come a long way in the last month and a half or so," said Smith. "Weve won some big games and theres a few that obviously wed like to have back. "Theyre all emotional games right now so its nice to get points and stay in." But with the teams Ottawa is chasing also winning, that makes the Senators task that much more difficult. "Theres not much separation or breathing room it seems," said Smith. "Everything can change within a few hours so you have to wait and check scores to see whats going on." But one benefit of a tight race is it makes every game important. "Every night youre playing for something and you know the points are that much more important," said Smith. "Its exciting to. "Win or lose you know it has a lot of influence on where your spot is and what position youre in." Should Ottawa be unable to crack the top eight by the break, Smith said there will still be plenty of time for the team to make a move. "When it comes down to it, theres still a lot of games left after the break," said Smith. "Its still a long season. "If we dont win a game or say we lose two games in a row were still not out of it by any means. Its good for motivation." NOTES -- Craig Anderson will start in goal against Boston . . . Forward Stephane DaCosta was re-assigned to the AHLs Binghamton Senators on Friday. In eight games, DaCosta had three goals and an assists . . . Defenceman Chris Phillips will miss his seventh straight game with a lower-body injury Saturday. Phillips skated on his own prior to practice . . . Defenceman Erik Karlsson was given a maintenance day Friday . . . Head coach Paul MacLean shuffled all of his lines at practice. But he said not much should be read into it as he was just having some fun . . . Most of the Senators said theyd be keeping a close eye on the Olympic action but also were looking forward to having a little down time. Vapormax Prezzo Basso . Bryant, who signed a five-year, $34 million contract as a free agent with Cleveland in March, reported symptoms on Monday morning, a team spokesman said. Air Max 98 Scontate . A rainy day saw the former champion Djokovic handle 14th-seeded Frenchman Jo- Wilfried Tsonga 6-3, 6-4, 7-6 (7-5) under the roof on the famed Centre Court. http://www.airmaxscarpescontate.it/scarpe-air-max-97-prezzo-basso.html . -- Justin Verlander took a no-hit bid into the sixth inning and won his fourth straight decision, leading Detroit over the Kansas City Royals 9-4 Sunday and extending the Tigers winning streak to a season-high five games. Nike Air Max 95 Prezzi Bassi . The Miami Heat star tops the leagues global list of top-selling jerseys for the 2012-13 season, edging Derrick Rose of the Chicago Bulls, Kobe Bryant of the Los Angeles Lakers, Kevin Durant of the Oklahoma City Thunder and James Heat teammate Dwyane Wade for the No. Nike Air Max Italia . - Pittsburgh Steelers president Art Rooney II says the NFL has told the team it will not be docked a pick in this years draft for coach Mike Tomlins foray onto the field against Baltimore last November.ARLINGTON, Texas - The Rangers avoided arbitration with Ross Detwiler, agreeing to one-year contract for $3,450,000 with the left-hander, a candidate for their rotation.Detwiler was acquired last month from the Washington Nationals, who used him exclusively as a reliever last season for the first time in his career. He wants to be a starter again.The deal Friday, which gives Detwiler a $450,000 raise and is guaranteed, leaves designated hitter Mitch Moreland as the only remaining Texas player in arbitration.Moreland is asking for $$3/35 million, and the Rangers have countered with $2.dddddddddddd75. He made $2.65 million last season, when he hit .246 with two home runs and 23 RBIs in 52 games before season-ending surgery on his left ankle.Detwiler worked mostly in long relief last year, going 2-3 with a 4.00 ERA in 63 innings over a career-high 47 appearances. He was left off Washingtons post-season roster for an NL division series loss to San Francisco.In six seasons with the Nationals, Detwiler was 20-32 with a 3.82 ERA. He made 69 starts. ' ' '