With another 15 days still left of the NHL season after tonight, the Ottawa Senators will look to delay elimination when they host the Anaheim Ducks tonight. A Senators regulation loss plus wins by Philadelphia, Boston, Detroit and a point by the New York Islanders would eliminate Ottawa from playoff contention.
The Senators will make a couple of changes with Chris Neil recovering from the flu and returning to the lineup with Scott Gomez being the healthy scratch. The second change will be Craig Anderson returning as the starter. The Ducks lost 4-3 in regulation to the Canadiens before coming back from 4-1 down in Toronto to take a 5-4 lead and then eventually losing 6-5 in overtime. The Ducks are three points behind the Kings for the division lead with a game in hand.
Here is the expected lineup for Ottawa.
Smith - Pageau - Stone
Hoffman - Zibanejad - Chiasson
Dzingel - Paul - Ryan
Puempel - Lazar - Neil
Claesson - Karlsson
Methot - Ceci
Kostka - Wideman
- Erik Karlsson needs six points in seven games to post the highest points total by a defenceman in 20 years.
- Alex Chiasson had six shots on goal against the Islanders. That is the most that he has had in a game with the Senators.
- After starting out very slowly like the rest of his teammates, Jakob Silfverberg has been scoring quite a lot. Silfverberg scored just three goals on 91 shots along with three assists for six points in his first 39 games. Since then, Silfverberg has 12 goals on 100 shots along with 13 assists for 25 points in the last 34 games.
- Ooh aah Silfverberg say ooh aah Silfverberg! Did you guys know that I really miss him?
- Mike Hoffman is currently only 16 shots behind Karlsson for the team lead. This is the closest a Senator has been to Karlsson (aside from the injury year) in shots since Jason Spezza led the team in shots in 2010-2011.
- Bobby Ryan is without a goal in nine straight games. He has a goal and three assists in five games against his former team.
- There are 31 goaltenders with 35 or more games played this year. Craig Anderson is ranked 25th in save percentage among them. Frederik Anderson of the Ducks is ranked 11th.
- The Senators have two home games remaining after tonight. They are against the Penguins and Panthers on 5 and 7 April respectively.
- After tonight, the Senators go on a road trip to Winnipeg, Minnesota and Philadelphia, and finish off in Boston after the two home games against the Penguins and Panthers.
- Ottawa is 10th last at the moment and the worst they could realistically drop to is eighth last. The Coyotes are three points back with a game in hand. After that, the seventh worst Sabres are six points behind Ottawa.
- Only Toronto, Vancouver, Lumbus and Edmonton have fewer non-shootout wins than the Senators.
- Karlsson is three points back of his career high of 78 points from 2011-2012.
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.
|Goals||Mike Hoffman||26||Corey Perry
|Assists||Erik Karlsson||62||Ryan Getzlaf
|Points||Erik Karlsson||75||Ryan Getzlaf||57|
|Shots||Erik Karlsson||228||Corey Perry||198|
|Average Ice time||Erik Karlsson||29:07||Cam Fowler||22:39|
|Event, Score and venue adjusted Corsi %||47.6%||22nd||52.6%||4th|
|Event, Score and venue adjusted Fenwick %||47.1%||23rd||52.9%||3rd|