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Game 5 Preview: Los Angeles Kings @ Ottawa Senators

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Dion Phaneuf returns to Ottawa in today’s afternoon game.

NHL: Ottawa Senators at Los Angeles Kings Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Kings visit the Ottawa Senators for a matinee matchup, with Dion Phaneuf returning to face his former team. A slew of injuries after last game have forced the Sens to bring a few new players into the lineup. Ben Harpur will draw in for Cody Ceci, and two of Nick Paul, Paul Carey and Christian Jaros will take the places of Ryan Dzingel and Alex Formenton. The decision whether to play six or seven defencemen is still up in the air.

Here are the lines and pairings from yesterday’s morning skate, with one cut still to come. Craig Anderson will be today’s starter.

Boedker - Duchene - White
Tkachuk - Smith - Stone
Paajarvi - Tierney - Ryan
Paul - Pyatt - Carey

Chabot - DeMelo
Borowiecki - Wideman
Lajoie - Jaros
Harpur

Anderson (starter)
Condon

Game Notes

  • With Cody Ceci out, it’ll be interesting to see how Guy Boucher manages the defence pairings. Lajoie and Ceci have together been the Sens’ most common duo, with heavy defensive zone usage. The Chabot-DeMelo pair have been used in more offensive situations, so do those defensive zone starts now fall on Borowiecki and Wideman?
  • As much as I’d love to see Christian Jaros get an extended look, it’d be fun to see Nick Paul and Paul Carey on the same line just for the sake of the play-by-play announcer.
  • Since the Phaneuf-for-Gaborik trade went down in February, Phaneuf has scored 10 points in 30 games for the Kings. It still feels weird to see how much we’ve come to cherish someone who formerly captained the Leafs. He was a respected leader to the players, and will surely be given a warm welcome.
  • Speaking of which, Phaneuf will be the Sens’ highest paid defenceman playing in today’s game, due to the $1.75 million in cap hit Ottawa retained during the trade.
  • Remember Ilya Kovalchuk? The last time he faced the Sens at the Canadian Tire Centre (or should I say Scotiabank Place) was on March 20th 2012, where he scored the lone goal for a 1-0 Devils win.
  • Ottawa’s six goals from rookies is currently the most in the NHL.
  • The Sens and Kings so far have been two of the NHL’s weakest defensive teams, claiming the 31st and 30th spots respectively in shots allowed per game.
  • It’s an afternoon game today, with a 2:00 p.m. start time. You can catch the broadcast on TSN5 or RDS.

Here are some stats from NHL.com and Natural Stat Trick.

Team Stats

Category Ottawa Senators Los Angeles Kings
Category Ottawa Senators Los Angeles Kings
-- Value Rank Value Rank
Goals/GP 3.75 11th 2.50 20th
Goalst against/GP 5.00 31st 1.75 4th
Shots/GP 28.8 22nd 23.0 29th
Shots against/GP 38.8 31st 37.5 30th
Powerplay % 26.7 8th 0.0 30th
Penalty Kill % 71.4 23rd 78.6 17th
Corsi (5v5, Score & Venue Adjusted) 44.08 24th 40.16 28th
Fenwick (5v5, SVA) 45.21 22nd 39.49 27th

Player Stats

Ottawa Senators Los Angeles Kings
Ottawa Senators Los Angeles Kings
-- Player # Player #
Goals Maxime Lajoie 3 Alex Iafallo & Anze Kopitar 2
Assists Chris Tierney 5 Tyler Toffoli 3
Points Chris Tierney & Thomas Chabot 6 Alex Iafallo & Tyler Toffoli 4
Shots Ryan Dzingel & Maxime Lajoie 12 Ilya Kovalchuk 16
TOI/GP Thomas Chabot 22:04 Drew Doughty 27:28