The Ottawa Senators will look to avoid losing a season high three straight games when they visit the Montréal Canadiens tonight. The Senators' inability to score finally caught up with them in a pair of losses by a combined score of 9-2. Since losing 5-2 in Calgary, Ottawa has scored more than one goal on the opposition goaltender in regulation just two times in 11 games. In the two games that they did score twice in regulation it was with seven seconds and 119 seconds remaining in regulation. The fact that Ottawa has gone 6-4-1 in those games is a small miracle.
The Canadiens meanwhile are off to a 14-3-2 start including being 11-0-1 at home. They are nine points ahead of Ottawa and one point ahead of the New York Rangers for first overall in the NHL.
Ottawa will welcome back my favourite forward, your favourite forward, Mike Hoffman. He will replace Matt Puempel who is now a Ranger. Meanwhile Craig Anderson will start in net, here are the lines and pairings.
Dzingel - Turris - Pyatt
Smith - Pageau - Stone
Hoffman - Brassard - Kelly
McCormick - Lazar - Neil
Methot - Karlsson
Phaneuf - Ceci
Borowiecki - Wideman
Some notes for tonight:
- Kyle Turris and Ryan Dzingel are the only Senators forwards currently on pace to even hit 40 points this season. That seems problematic.
- Ottawa has been fortunate to win a lot of close games this season or things could be a lot bleaker. The Senators are 7-1-1 in games decided by one goal and 3-6 in games decided by more than a goal.
- The Senators haven't held a two goal lead since Bobby Ryan scored in the empty net to make it 2-0 against Edmonton on 30 October.
- Alex Galchenyuk leads the Canadiens with 19 points in 19 games. That is great news for people like me that have him on their fantasy team.
- The Senators are currently just outside a playoff spot, losing a tiebreaker to the New Jersey Devils on non-shootout wins.
- Shea Weber is tied for the NHL lead with six power play goals. That is one more than the entire Ottawa Senators.
- Erik Karlsson's 14 points are one more than the 13 points by the rest of the Senators defence combined.
- The Senators penalty kill has allowed only six goals while scoring two shorthanded goals as well.
- Despite being fifth in the league with 31.7 shots per game, Ottawa is second last with 2.06 goals per game.
- Kyle Turris has 22% of Ottawa's goals this season.
Here are some stats for the two teams tonight. All stats are from NHL.com except Corsi and Fenwick are from www.puckon.net.
|Goals||Kyle Turris||8||Alex Galchenyuk||7|
|Points||Erik Karlsson||14||Alex Galchenyuk||19|
|Shots||Mike Hoffman||53||Brendan Gallagher||50|
|Average Ice time||Erik Karlsson||27:11||Shea Weber||25:29|
|Event, Score and venue adjusted Corsi %||45.9%||27th||53.1%||7th|
|Event, Score and venue adjusted Fenwick %||46.7%||25th||53.8%||5th|