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Game 39 preview: Ottawa Senators @ Chicago Blackhawks

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A preview of the game between the Ottawa Senators and Chicago Blackhawks on 3 January 2016

Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports

After three days off, the Ottawa Senators get back into action with tonight's game in Chicago against the Blackhawks. After winning just three of their last 10 games, the Senators have fallen to 10th in the eastern conference. Seven of Ottawa's next nine games are on the road, including tonight's game, tomorrow's game in St. Louis as well as games in Washington, the three California teams and New Jersey.

Ottawa will return with the same lineup as Jared Cowen and David Dziurzynski will be the healthy scratches. Here are the lines and pairings from Ken Warren. Craig Anderson is expected to start in goal.

Smith - Turris - Stone
Hoffman - Zibanejad - Ryan
McCormick - Pageau - Chiasson
Prince - Lazar - Neil

Claesson - Karlsson
Methot - Wideman
Wiercioch - Borowiecki

Anderson (starter)
Hammond

Some notes for tonight:

  • Erik Karlsson had his seven-game points streak end against New Jersey and is also now one point behind Patrick Kane for the NHL assist lead. Karlsson is still fourth in the NHL in points.
  • Patrick Kane leads the NHL with 56 points and incredibly is 22 points ahead of his next closest teammate, Artemi Panarin at 34.
  • Jonathan Toews has only 24 points in 39 games. He is on pace for a career low 50 points (excluding the lockout year).
  • Bobby Ryan has just assist and only four shots on goal in his last four games.
  • Mike Hoffman has taken only two minor penalties this season.
  • Zack Smith has one point in 33:05 of power play time this season. Mike Hoffman has seven in 81:46 but still can't get on unit one over the last several weeks.
  • Karlsson has 300 more minutes of ice time than his next closest teammate, Kyle Turris. Karlsson has played 32:46 or more in four of the last five games which sounds like insanity.
  • Karlsson finished 2015 with 86 points in 90 combined regular season and playoff games.
  • With Milan Michalek not too far away, the Senators will hopefully get a boost in the depth on the bottom six. It is not very good these days.
  • The Senators are still only six points behind the division lead but they are also only nine points ahead of last place in the NHL.

Here are some stats for the two teams tonight. All stats are from NHL.com except Corsi and Fenwick are from www.puckon.net. Note that Corsi is now adjusted for score as well as the venue and event type.

Category Ottawa Chicago
Player # Player #
Goals Mike Hoffman 18 Patrick Kane 23
Assists Erik Karlsson 32 Patrick Kane 33
Points Erik Karlsson 41 Patrick Kane 56
Shots Mike Hoffman 101 Patrick Kane 137
Average Ice time Erik Karlsson 28:22 Duncan Keith 25:35

Category Ottawa Chicago
# Rank # Rank
Goals For 2.84 6th 2.74 9th
Goals Against 2.92 26th 2.49 13th
Event, Score and venue adjusted Corsi % 47.3% 24th 52.1% 8th
Event, Score and venue adjusted Fenwick % 46.9% 26th 50.7% 11th
Shots For 27.9 28th 30.8 8th
Shots Against 33.8 30th 29.9 18th