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Game 8 preview: Ottawa Senators @ Edmonton Oilers

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Preview of the game between the Ottawa Senators and the Edmonton Oilers on October 30, 2016.

Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports

To close out their early season Western Canada road trip, the Ottawa Senators take a trip up North to visit the Edmonton Oilers (aka. Connor McDavid & Friends). Coming off a 5-2 loss to the Calgary Flames on Friday night, the Senators are looking to get back into the win column.

Saturday brought along some sad news for the Ottawa Senators family. General manager Pierre Dorion announced that Craig Anderson 's wife Nicholle has been diagnosed with cancer. Our thoughts are with the Anderson family at this challenging time.

After an injury to Andrew Hammond on a non-contact play, the Sens recalled Matt O'Connor to back up Chris Driedger. Just when it looked as though the Senators would be down to their third- and fourth-string goalies for the next while, Nicholle Anderson urged her husband Craig Anderson to take a flight to Edmonton and rejoin the team. Coach Guy Boucher confirmed that Anderson will get the start for tonight's game.

At the other end of the ice, the Oilers are coming off a 2-0 shutout win against the Vancouver Canucks and they are currently holding on to the top spot in the Western Conference with a record of 7-1-0.

The expected lines for tonight are:

Hoffman - Turris - Pyatt
Dzingel - Brassard - Ryan
Smith - Pageau - Stone
Puempel - Kelly - Neil

Methot - Karlsson
Phaneuf - Ceci
Borowiecki - Wideman

Anderson (starter)
Driedger

Some notes for tonight:

  • Ottawa and Edmonton split the season series last year 1-1. In those two meetings last season, McDavid managed to put up 3 assists in total. Will the Sens be able to keep him at bay?
  • Dion Phaneuf has picked up 30 points in 41 career games against the Oilers, the most he has against any opponent.
  • Erik Karlsson is six points back of Radek Bonk for 5th place in all-time points as a Senator. A record that will surely fall in the coming games.
  • When will Mike Hoffman find the back of the net? His personal goalless streak is now at 9 games dating back to last season. That's his longest streak since the end of the 2013-14 season.
  • The Oilers are no longer the pushover that they used to be in the last couple years. With a 7-1-0 record and the league's second-best offence, the Oilers look scary good.
  • Heading into last game, the Sens had the league-worst powerplay at 6.7%. With a pair of powerplay goals last game, they have quickly climbed up to 19th spot with 15.8%. Calgary is just a shade better with a 12.1% success rate.
  • The Sens have an all-time record of 16-16-4-1 (W-L-T-OTL) against the Oilers, they will hope to get above .500 tonight.

Here are some stats for the two teams tonight for last season. All stats are from NHL.com except Corsi and Fenwick are from www.puckon.net.

Category Ottawa Edmonton
Player # Player #
Goals Kyle Turris, Ryan Dzingel 4 Connor McDavid 5
Assists Erik Karlsson 5 Connor McDavid 7
Points Erik Karlsson 8 Connor McDavid 12
Shots Mike Hoffman 26 Jordan Eberle 25
Average Ice time Erik Karlsson 25:54 Andrej Sekera 22:03

Category Ottawa Edmonton
# Rank # Rank
Goals For 3.14 8th 3.63 2nd
Goals Against 3.57 26th 2.13 5th
Event, Score and venue adjusted Corsi % 48.0% 24th 53.8% 7th
Event, Score and venue adjusted Fenwick % 50.3% 19th 55.2% 5th
Shots For 33.0 3rd 28.6 23rd
Shots Against 28.3 9th 32.5 25th