FanPost

The week ahead: Mar 25 to 31

The home stand continues all week, with all 3 visitors hot on the heels of the Sens in the standings. In fact, those 3 teams are respectively 7th, 6th and 8th (whoops) 8th and 6th in the East to start the week.

Game 33 - Devils at Senators

The Devils are making their only visit to SBP Monday night, and it's been over a month since the Sens last face them.

The reinvigorated power play should get some chances, as the Devils have been short handed the 5th most in the league and they have a 20th ranked penalty kill. One thing to watch out for is not having any power plays backfire. The Devils have a league leading 8 short handed goals, including 4 on the road - 2nd place only has 5 in total. On the offensive front beyond short handed goals, New Jersey ranks 23rd in road goals per game. Ilya Kovalchuk is below his career 1 point per game pace (seriously - 812 points in 811 games), with a still dangerous 0.84 points per game, but is out at the moment removing one of their biggest threats from the ice (thanks Mark for pointing that out). Patrik Elias leads the Devils in points with an also dangerous 0.91. Beyond that production falls, but you can't ignore David Clarkson who is leading the Devils in goals with 12, or Adam Henrique who matches Kovalchuk and Elias with 10 goals.

Ben Bishop stood tall (drink once if you're playing the "Capital Gains" drinking game right now) against the Devils last time, and is getting the opportunity to do it again.

Game 34 - Rangers at Senators

The Rangers are not good on the road. They're tied for last in the league for goals on the road, rank 27th for goals against on the road, and have the worst road record in the east out of the teams that are still reasonably in the hunt for a playoff spot.

Rick Nash has slowed down, with only 2 points in his last 7 games, but still leads the Rangers in points. And goals. And assists. Beyond Nash the pace falls off sharply, but for raw number of goals Derek Stepan and Marian Gaborik are only 1 behind.

Henrik Lundqvist is not in Vezina form this season, but is still top 10 for both GAA and SV%.

Game 35 - Maple Leafs at Senators

Nazem Kadri has kept up a strong pace, with 9 points in the last 4 games and 10 since Ottawa visited the ACC. He shares the team lead in goals with James van Riemsdyk, and the lead in assists with Phil Kessel. He is definitely their most dangerous player right now.

Goaltending is the weakness right now. The tandem of James Reimer and Ben Scrivens have combined for a 3.4 GAA and a .900 SV% in the last 10 games, and allowed at least 2 goals in each of those.

Ottawa needs to say out of the penalty box. The Maple Leafs have the 5th ranked road power play in the league. The Leafs lead the league in major penalties, misconducts, game misconducts and PIMs. Yet they're only 12th in the league for PK time. A bit of discipline and we could see Toronto end up with the "extra 2" out of the inevitable scrums.

This FanPost was written by a member of the Silver Seven community, and does not necessarily reflect the beliefs or opinions of the site managers, editors, or Sports Blogs Nation, Inc.

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