Game 51 preview: Ottawa Senators @ Tampa Bay Lightning

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

A preview of the game between the Ottawa Senators and Tampa Bay Lightning on 23 January 2014.

The Ottawa Senators will look to continue a strong run of play on the road when they visit the Tampa Bay Lighting tonight. The Senators are coming off a 2-0 shutout win against the Capitals. They are one point behind the Blue Jackets for the final playoff spot and three points behind the Flyers. The Flyers and the Blue Jackets play each other tonight.

The Senators will make no changes to the lineup with Marc Methot, Joe Corvo and Matt Kassian the healthy scratches. Craig Anderson will make his fourth straight start. Here are the lines from Bruce Garrioch.

MacArthur - Turris - Ryan
Smith - Spezza - Condra
Conacher - Zibanejad - Michalek
Greening - Da Costa - Neil

Cowen - Karlsson
Phillips - Ceci
Wiercioch - Gryba

Anderson (starter)
Lehner

Some notes for tonight:

  • A lot has been made of the decision to make Marc Methot a healthy scratch tonight, but on the other hand, I think it is a positive to see Patrick Wiercioch play again. He has deserved to play a lot more than he has.
  • Kyle Turris is lighting mups like he is on fiyaaaaaaaa. He is now tied with Bobby Ryan for second on the team with 38 points. Turris has five goals in the last six games.
  • Despite being frequently scratched, Wiercioch is 8th on the team in points. He is sixth in points/game behind only Erik Karlsson, Kyle Turris, Clarke MacArthur, Bobby Ryan, Jason Spezza.
  • Karlsson played almost 30 minutes in the last game which included a team leading 4:32 on the penalty kill. He is the best defenceman in the NHL currently in terms of allowing shot attempts in 4-on-5 play.
  • Tonight will be Milan Michalek's 600th NHL regular season game and the 200th for Erik Condra.
  • He plays easy minutes yes, but would you be surprised that the Senators generate more shot attempts per minute of Wiercioch on the ice than Karlsson?
  • Ben Bishop is having a Vezina Trophy and possibly even Hart Trophy worth season. He currently leads the NHL with a 93.5 save percentage.

Here are some stats leaders for the two teams tonight.

Category Ottawa Tampa Bay
Player # Player #
Goals Bobby Ryan 19 Martin St. Louis 25
Assists Erik Karlsson 36 Martin St. Louis 25
Points Erik Karlsson 47 Martin St. Louis 50
Shots Erik Karlsson 154 Martin St. Louis 134
Average Ice time Erik Karlsson 27:14 Matthew Carle 22:07

Category Ottawa Tampa Bay
# Rank # Rank
Goals For 2.78 10th 2.82 9th
Goals Against 3.00 27th 2.40 7th
Corsi Close % 51.3% 11th 52.2% 7th
Fenwick Close % 50.3% 15th 51.9% 10th
Shots For 32.9 3rd 29.4 19th
Shots Against 33.5 27th 29.1 9th
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