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Round One, Game Five preview: Ottawa Senators @ Canadiens de Montréal

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A preview of the game between the Ottawa Senators and the Montréal Canadiens on 24 April 2015.

Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports

Having kept the series alive, the Ottawa Senators will try to really make a series of it and push it to a sixth game when they visit the Canadiens for game five. Having not trailed in a game since late in game two, Ottawa still finds itself down 3-1. The positive for Ottawa was that they were clearly the better team on Wednesday and the lineup decisions should also be a big positive for tonight.

Chris Neil will be scratched for Alex Chiasson and Mike Hoffman will move up to the second line.

Here are the lines and pairings for the Senators.

MacArthur - Turris - Stone
Hoffman - Zibanejad - Ryan
Condra - Pageau - Lazar
Michalek - Smith - Chiasson

Methot - Karlsson
Wiercioch - Ceci
Borowiecki - Gryba

Anderson (starter)
Hammond

Some notes for tonight:

  • In the last three games, the Senators have had 58% (82-59) of the even strength shot attempts with Erik Karlsson on the ice and 41% (69-98) with Karlsson off the ice. I think he might be Ottawa's best player you guys.
  • Karlsson played the last 2:38 of game four with Ottawa holding a one-goal lead.
  • The line of Hoffman/Zibanejad/Ryan were played purely in the offensive zone and they were dominant. With Hoffman and Zibanejad on together, Ottawa had 18 shot attempts while the Canadiens had two.
  • When Dave Cameron was asked why the team didn't hit as much as in game three, he responded that the Canadiens took advantage of an aggressive second forechecker to quickly attack the other way. Nice to see Ottawa making the adjustment and stop focusing on hitting everything.
  • Ottawa has scored the first goal in every game.
  • This series could have such a different complexion if the Senators had gotten a couple of bounces earlier in the series. But still, they are alive!
  • That face-off violation penalty to Mike Hoffman was truly shocking under the circumstances. Goodness gracious.
  • In seven career playoff games against the Habs, Craig Anderson has a save percentage of 95.7% and a goals against average of 1.54.
  • That third period by Ottawa was one of the best they have played. Complete control, got the goal and didn't allow too many chances after they got the goal. That was about as stress-free a finish you can get when facing elimination.
  • I am very impressed by Cameron. It is one thing to keep Chris Neil out when coming back from injury, but another to put him back in and take him out again. If Ottawa doesn't win this series, is it possible Neil has played his last game in Ottawa?
  • Karlsson didn't have a shot on goal on Wednesday. The last time that happened was on 3 January.
  • Daniel Alfredsson will be in the crowd tonight. Alfie expects every man to do his job.

Here are some stats for the two teams tonight. All stats are from NHL.com except Corsi and Fenwick are from www.war-on-ice.com

Category Ottawa Montréal
Player # Player #
Goals Clarke MacArthur 2 Dale Weise 2
Assists Erik Karlsson 3 P.K. Subban 2
Points Erik Karlsson 3 P.K. Subban 3
Shots Kyle Turris 13 P.K. Subban 17
Average Ice time Erik Karlsson 29:12 Andrei Markov 26:31

Category Ottawa Montréal
# Rank # Rank
Goals For 1.75 15th 2.25 7th
Goals Against 2.25 6th 1.75 1st
Score adjusted Corsi % 50.4% 8th 49.6% 9th
Score adjusted Fenwick % 49.6% 9th 50.4% 8th
Shots For 32.5 5th 39.5 2nd
Shots Against 39.5 15th 32.5 12th