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Game 53 preview: Toronto Maple Leafs @ Ottawa Senators

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A preview of the game between the Ottawa Senators and Toronto Maple Leafs on 6 February 2016.

Claus Andersen/Getty Images

A surging Erik Karlsson will look to stay on track in tonight's game against the Toronto Maple Leafs. Karlsson's two points on Thursday gave him points in seven of his last eight games, totalling 10 in that span. His 55 points leave him three points out of the final wild card spot in the eastern conference. Mike Hoffman also scored in the 7-2 loss to Edmonton, which followed a 6-5 loss in Pittsburgh.

The Leafs won 3-2 against New Jersey in their last game and are five points behind Ottawa at the moment. The Senators called up Ryan Dzingel and Nick Paul to replace the injured David Dziurzynski and the demoted Max McCormick. Craig Anderson will start, here are the lines.

Hoffman - Zibanejad - Ryan
Smith - Pageau - Stone
Prince - Lazar - Chiasson
Dzingel - Paul - Neil

Methot - Karlsson
Borowiecki - Ceci
Wiercioch - Wideman

Anderson (starter)
Hammond

Some notes for tonight:

  • Karlsson heads into tonight's game tied for third in the NHL in points. A defenceman hasn't finished in the top 5 in the NHL scoring race since Paul Coffey in 1985-1986. A defenceman hasn't finished in the top five while leading his team in scoring since Bobby Orr in 1974-1975.
  • Karlsson's 44 assists have him tied with Patrick Kane for the NHL lead. Karlsson also has a game in hand.
  • Mike Hoffman is on pace for 37 goals. A 35-goal season before negotiating a new contract is looking like being a real possibility.
  • Karlsson played 27:14 against Edmonton. That was the first time he played less than 28 minutes in almost two months. The last time he was under 28 minutes was 24:57 against the Kings on 14 December.
  • Mark Stone has a goal in consecutive games after going without a point in eight straight games. The five shots on goal against Edmonton were a season high. The previous highest were the four shots on goal on 28 November and 1 December.
  • Among the 29 goalies with 25 or more games played this season. Craig Anderson is now 23rd in save percentage. James Reimer is first among the same group.
  • Aside from Karlsson, only Jean-Gabriel Pageau, Chris Neil and Mark Borowiecki have played every game this season.
  • The Senators have given up five goals or more in five of their last 10 games.
  • Ottawa is now dead last in both shots allowed as well as goals allowed per game. Goaltending is no longer keeping them afloat.

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 Toronto
Player # Player #
Goals Mike Hoffman 23 Leo Komarov 17
Assists Erik Karlsson 44 Tyler Bozak 21
Points Erik Karlsson 55 Leo Komarov 33
Shots Erik Karlsson 152 Nazem Kadri 187
Average Ice time Erik Karlsson 28:53 Matt Hunwick 22:33

Category Ottawa Toronto
# Rank # Rank
Goals For 2.73 8th 2.32 27th
Goals Against 3.15 30th 2.68 21st
Event, Score and venue adjusted Corsi % 46.5% 27th 49.7% 19th
Event, Score and venue adjusted Fenwick % 45.8% 29th 49.0% 20th
Shots For 28.4 26th 31.1 6th
Shots Against 33.2 30th 31.5 27th