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Game 81 preview: Florida Panthers @ Ottawa Senators

A preview of the game between the Ottawa Senators and the Florida Panthers on 7 April 2016.

Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports

The Ottawa Senators will play their final home of a dreadful season when they host the newly crowned Atlantic Division champions, the Florida Panthers. The Senators have been out of the playoff race for the last two months, and have blown 3-0 leads in each of their last two home games. The Panthers have won four in a row and are locked into the #2 seed and like Ottawa, have nothing to play for over the final two games.

The Senators will go with the same lineup as the one that lost 5-3 to Pittsburgh on Tuesday with Bobby Ryan and Alex Chiasson both being good to go. Here are the likely lines.

Smith - Pageau - Ryan
Hoffman - Zibanejad - Dzingel
Puempel - Lazar - Chiasson
Robinson - Paul - Neil

Claesson - Karlsson
Kostka - Ceci
Harpur - Wideman

Anderson (starter)
Hammond

Some notes for tonight:

  • Erik Karlsson currently has 78.43% of the points that the league's scoring leader Patrick Kane has. That is the highest percentage for a defenceman since Bobby Orr won the scoring title in 1974-1975.
  • In terms of the absolute points difference, Karlsson's 80 points are 22 fewer than Kane's 102. That is the second lowest difference (in a non-lockout season) between a defenceman and the scoring leader since 1974-1975. The lowest difference since then was when Karlsson's 66 points were 21 fewer than Jamie Benn's last season.
  • Tuesday's goal was the 100th regular season goal of Karlsson's career. He needs one more to tie Wade Redden for most career goals by a Senators defenceman.
  • Karlsson is fourth in league scoring, three points ahead of Johnny Gaudreau in sixth. If Karlsson finishes in the top five, it would be the first time that a defenceman has done that since Paul Coffey in 1985-1986.
  • Moving on from Karlsson notes, we go to Mike Hoffman notes.
  • Since the start of last season here is how Hoffman ranks in the league for the following categories: goals (19th), even strength goals (10th), even strength points (20th), shots (39th).
  • When adjusting for ice time, here is how Hoffman ranks over the past two years per 60 minutes of 5-on-5 (minimum 1,000 minutes): fourth in goals and ninth in points.
  • The 234 shots on goal by Hoffman this year are the most by a Senators forward since 2008-2009. He has 56 more shots than any other Senators forward this season.
  • Hoffman needs one more assist and goal to reach 30 in both categories.
  • Zack Smith is now tied with Mark Stone for second on the team with 23 goals.
  • Bobby Ryan is without a goal in his last 14 games. He does have seven assists though.
  • Ottawa is currently 10th last in the NHL.
  • Mika Zibanejad needs one more points for 50 on the season.
  • Jaromir Jagr has 64 points at the age of 44. That is insanity.

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 Florida
Player # Player #
Goals Mike Hoffman 29 Aleksander Barkov
28
Assists Erik Karlsson 64 Jussi Jokinen
41
Points Erik Karlsson 80 Jaromir Jagr 64
Shots Erik Karlsson 244 Aaron Ekblad 176
Average Ice time Erik Karlsson 29:03 Brian Campbell 22:14

Category Ottawa Florida
# Rank # Rank
Goals For 2.76 9th 2.83 8th
Goals Against 2.99 27th 2.44 7th
Event, Score and venue adjusted Corsi % 47.8% 22nd 51.3% 12th
Event, Score and venue adjusted Fenwick % 47.4% 22nd 51.7% 10th
Shots For 28.3 27th 28.8 24th
Shots Against 32.7 30th 29.6 13th