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Round 1, Game 1 Preview: Boston Bruins @ Ottawa Senators

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The Ottawa Senators host the Boston Bruins to kick off the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs!

Ottawa Senators v Boston Bruins Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images

It’s playoff time, and the Ottawa Senators will kick off the 2017 Stanley Cup playoffs by taking on the Boston Bruins at home. The Senators will be regaining a number of key players to their roster, whereas Boston will be missing a few.

After missing the playoffs in a disappointing 2015-16, the Senators have spent this season on a different level, with their final record of 34-28-10 being their second best season since the Stanley Cup Finals a decade ago. The time to win is now for Ottawa, and that all starts tonight in round one of the playoffs.

Here’s tonight’s projected lineup, from Bruce Garrioch:

Stalberg - Brassard - Burrows
MacArthur - Turris - Ryan
Hoffman - Pageau - Stone
Pyatt - Smith - Wingels

Methot - Karlsson
Phaneuf - Ceci
Borowiecki - Wideman

Anderson (starter)
Condon

Here are some notes for tonight’s contest:

  • Quote from Guy Boucher yesterday: "Don’t look at the lines today. That could change in five minutes."
  • With plentiful depth comes the hard decision to scratch some players, and it appears tonight’s notable victims will be Chris Kelly, Ryan Dzingel and Fredrik Claesson. Kelly hasn’t been a scratch all year.
  • In their head-to-head matchup this season, Ottawa swept all four games, outscoring the Bruins by a total 11-6. They never allowed more than two goals against in a single game.
  • Going back a bit further, Ottawa’s on a six game winning streak against the B’s, having also gone 10-2-0 in their past twelve meetings.
  • Ottawa’s scoring leader against the Bruins this season was a tie between Mike Hoffman (1G, 3A) and Dion Phaneuf (0G, 4A). Torey Krug is the only player to match that production against Ottawa this season with a goal and three assists.
  • Speaking of Krug, he won’t be playing tonight, which should be a huge loss for the Bruins’ blue line. Also injured for Boston are Brandon Carlo, Noel Acciari and Jimmy Hayes, who are all currently listed as day-to-day. David Krejci and Dominic Moore both missed the Bruins’ most recent practice, although both are expected to be ready for tonight.
  • Returning for Ottawa will be Erik Karlsson, Zack Smith, and Marc Methot. There’s still a slight uncertainty surrounding Methot, although as of now he’s pencilled in to play.
  • The Bruins lost their last two games of the regular season, although they won all six previous. The Senators won three of their last four games of the regular season, although they lost all five previous.
  • Tuukka Rask will start for Boston, who has a career .921 SV% against Ottawa. Anderson will be back in net for Ottawa.
  • There’s been plenty of playoff coverage already here on Silver Seven, which I’ll all link here: full schedule, predictions, Q&A with opposition, three questions, hotstoveTale of the Tape and matchup.
  • Also, if you haven’t already entered the bracket challenge or playoff pool, make sure to do that before the 7:00 P.M. start tonight.
  • If you live in the US, NBC is also doing sweet free live streams of all the playoffs! Here's the link for tonight's game.
Here are some regular season stats for the two teams tonight. All stats are from NHL.com except Corsi and Fenwick are from Corsica.

Category Ottawa Boston
Player # Player #
Goals Kyle Turris 27 Brad Marchand 39
Assists Erik Karlsson 54 Brad Marchand 46
Points Erik Karlsson 71 Brad Marchand 85
Shots Mike Hoffman 224 Patrice Bergeron 302
Average Ice time Erik Karlsson 26:50 Zdeno Chara 23:19

Category

Ottawa Boston
# Rank # Rank
Goals For 2.51 22nd 2.83 13th
Goals Against 2.56 10th 2.55 9th
Score and venue adjusted Corsi % 48.41% 22nd 55.23% 1st
Event, Score and venue adjusted Fenwick % 48.64% 23rd 55.42% 1st
Shots For 30.0 17th 33.2 2nd
Shots Against 30.1 15th 26.8 2nd