It is a huge game for the Ottawa Senators tonight. The Buffalo Sabres have closed to within four points of Ottawa and while the Senators are still in a commanding position, there is a small chance of things slipping away. With the red hot Pittsburgh Penguins in town tomorrow, it is imperative for the Senators to win tonight.
Craig Anderson will make his return and will get the start while Ben Bishop will back him up. You might feel sorry for Alex Auld, but have you ever tried to solve a Sudoku puzzle on a bench with 20,000 obnoxious Habs fans around you? Jason Spezza will also return, and Bobby Butler will return to being a healthy scratch. I don't know what the lines are but Zack Smith will play on the second line with Kyle Turris and Daniel Alfredsson according to Nicolas St-Pierre.
Colin Greening - Jason Spezza - Milan Michalek
Zack Smith - Kyle Turris - Daniel Alfredsson
Random combinations of Foligno, Klinkhammer, Condra, O'Brien, Neil and Konopka.
Filip Kuba - Erik Karlsson
Jared Cowen - Sergei Gonchar
Chris Phillips - Matt Gilroy
Craig Anderson (starter)
More after the jump.
Here are some things to discuss for tonight:
- Score some goals: Ottawa hasn't done much of that lately. Can they do so tonight? I sure hope so.
- Smith on second line: Zack Smith hasn't played well for months, but he's being given a chance to play on the wing with Turris and Alfredsson. It's a line of three struggling players, can they get each other going?
- Solving Carey Price: Price is 3-0-2 against Ottawa this year and has played them very well. Ottawa has gotten a lot of shots at him in the last couple of games and has taken five out of six points in the last three games against the Habs. It would be nice to pop four or five in on Price tonight.
- Anderson returns: What kind of game shape will Anderson be in tonight? Will the females in the crowd in Montréal distract him?
- Brutal power play: Can we fix this already? Six straight games without a power play goal, three straight games with a 5-on-3 opportunity squandered.
- Spezza also returns: Can Giggles get back to his giggling happy ways?