The Senators have three more games, including tonight’s, ahead of Christmas, and after a month of misery, they look to build a three-game win streak. The Wild have lost two in a row and are in the middle of a four-game road trip.
Tonight’s game will see Nick Paul come in for the injured (and also invisible) Gabriel Dumont. Ben Harpur was called up but should be scratched unless there’s a last-minute injury. Craig Anderson gets his second start in as many games. Here are the practice lines and pairings:
Smith - Pageau - Pyatt
Hoffman - Brassard - Dzingel
Dumont - Thompson - Burrows
Oduya - Karlsson
Phaneuf - Ceci
Claesson - Chabot
- Since Erik Karlsson played 28:03 at even strength last game, he got to play with many D partners. He was with Johnny Oduya for 15:33, Fredrik Claesson for 5:19, Dion Phaneuf for 4:07, Thomas Chabot for 2:34, and even Cody Ceci for 0:42 (all times at even strength) — all stats via NaturalStatTrick.com
- Interestingly, Karlsson played 8-9 minutes with the Smith-Pageau-Pyatt line. Maybe Boucher has realized Karlsson is his team’s best shutdown defenceman by far (and the Sens really shut down the Canadiens)
- Jean-Gabriel Pageau had the most even-strength ice time of any forward last game at 15:07. Likely having three powerplays and just one penalty kill affects this. Mark Stone played a total of 20:06, and Matt Duchene played 18:27 when you switch to all situations
- Will Gabriel Dumont draw back in when he’s healthy? I know nothing about the guy, but for some reason he’s become an untouchable, invisible fourth-liner. I hear all your arguments about Dumont playing junior for Boucher, and I point out Chris DiDomenico was also a Boucher signing and we all know what happened to him
- It was cool to see Stone out at the end of last game protecting the lead. He’s Ottawa’s best puck-handling forward, and his hand-eye was directly responsible for the empty net sealing goal.
- I’m cautiously hopeful for a win. That hasn’t happened in three or four weeks now.
Stats for tonight’s game (thanks to NHL.com and NaturalStatTrick.com):
|Penalty Kill %||76.2||27th||83.3||4th|
|Corsi (5v5, Score & Venue Adjusted)||46.32||29th||53.97||2nd|
|Fenwick (5v5, SVA)||46.94||27th||54.01||1st|
|Goals||Matt Duchene||27||Brad Marchand||34|
|Assists||Erik Karlsson (out)||53||Brad Marchand||51|
|Points||Karlsson/Stone (both out)||62||Brad Marchand||85|
|Shots||Mike Hoffman||253||David Pastrnak||236|
|TOI/GP||Erik Karlsson (out)||26:44||Zdeno Chara||22:53|