A loss against the Winnipeg Jets will officially eliminate the Ottawa Senators from playoff contention. The Senators could also be eliminated if the Philadelphia Flyers beat the Washington Capitals tonight. It has been a disappointing season and it is almost over, but before that happens, the Senators start a three-game road through Winnipeg, Minnesota and Philadelphia.
The only change to the lineup is that Andrew Hammond will start with the Senators playing again tomorrow night. Here are the lines that played against Anaheim on Saturday.
Smith - Pageau - Stone
Hoffman - Zibanejad - Ryan
Dzingel - Lazar - Chiasson
Puempel - Paul - Neil
Claesson - Karlsson
Methot - Ceci
Kostka - Wideman
Some notes for tonight:
- Erik Karlsson will likely become the first defenceman to lead the NHL in assists since Bobby Orr was tied for the lead in 1974-1975. Karlsson currently leads Joe Thornton by six assists and Patrick Kane by seven. Karlsson has six games remaining while while Thornton and Kane have five games left.
- Karlsson has lost his lead for points by an Eastern Conference player to Sidney Crosby, but Karlsson remains fourth in the NHL. He is now only five points ahead of Brent Burns for the defensive scoring lead.
- Mike Hoffman and Mark Stone each have 42 even strength points although Hoffman has played 100 fewer minutes than Stone at even strength.
- It hasn't been mentioned a whole but the Senators get 48% of the 5-on-5 shot attempts with Erik Karlsson and Marc Methot on the ice together. When Karlsson is with someone other than Methot, the Senators get 56% of the shot attempts while getting 41% when Methot is on without Karlsson.
- This is just another way that Karlsson is playing superbly despite his teammates.
- Ottawa hasn't won on the road since 5 March in Toronto. They haven't won a game outside Ontario in March.
- The Senators haven't won a game outside Canada since winning in San Jose on 18 January.
- Mika Zibanejad has already set a career high in assists, points and shots on goal. He needs three more goals to pass last year's career high of 20 goals.
- The Senators have allowed 58 goals on the penalty kill which is the second most in the NHL. The Jets have allowed the third most with 57.
- The Jets have also been shorthanded 267 times, which is the second most in the NHL.
- Clarke MacArthur and Dion Phaneuf will be out for the remainder of the season.
- Blake Wheeler has 68 points this season, following up on 61 points last season, 69 the year before that, 41 in 48 games during the lockout and 64 in the year before that. He is 17th in the NHL in points since 2011-2012 and never really gets mentioned.
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||27||Mark Scheifele
|Assists||Erik Karlsson||62||Blake Wheeler
|Points||Erik Karlsson||76||Blake Wheeler||68|
|Shots||Erik Karlsson||231||Blake Wheeler||239|
|Average Ice time||Erik Karlsson||29:07||Dustin Byfuglien||25:00|
|Event, Score and venue adjusted Corsi %||47.6%||22nd||50.6%||14th|
|Event, Score and venue adjusted Fenwick %||47.1%||23rd||50.2%||15th|