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Game 31 Preview: Boston Bruins @ Ottawa Senators

Time for another good roll

NHL: Boston Bruins at Ottawa Senators Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports

It’s time for the big bad Bruins!

After losing two in a row to the Habs, the Sens came back with a gutsy win last night against the Pittsburgh Penguins on an OT winner by Ryan Dzingel. The Sens would love to see another winning streak start and beating the Bruins would be the confidence boost they need. The Sens’ luck continues to take a hit as they will be without defensemen Dylan DeMelo and Christian Jaros tonight. On the bright side, Max Lajoie will be returning to the lineup which should hopefully give them a boost.

It’s a tight race in the East and while nobody expects the Sens to make the playoffs, it’s nice to keep track anyways. A win tonight combined with a Habs loss would put the Sens a mere 2 points away from the coveted final wild card spot. One could foolishly hope, right?

The Bruins are coming off a demanding 6-3 win against the Toronto Maple Leafs and will be looking to build off that win against another divisional rival. With both team playing back to back games, it will be interesting to see which team will let the fatigue set in.

Ottawa Senators Lineup

Tkachuk - White - Stone
Boedker - Tierney - Batherson
Dzingel - Smith - Paajarvi
McCormick - Paul - Pyatt

Chabot - Harpur
Lajoie - Ceci
Burgdoerfer - Falk

McKenna (starter)

Time for some stats; courtesy of and Natural Stat Trick:

Team Stats

Category Ottawa Senators Boston Bruins
Category Ottawa Senators Boston Bruins
-- Value Rank Value Rank
Goals/GP 3.47 6th 2.69 27th
Goals Against/GP 4.00 31st 2.59 3rd
Shots/GP 29.6 25th 31.4 17th
Shots Against/GP 38.1 31st 32.0 22nd
Powerplay % 23.2 10th 26.9 6th
Penalty Kill % 72.4 31st 76.4 26th
Corsi (5v5, Score & Venue Adjusted) 42.50 31st 51.61 8th
Fenwick (5v5, SVA) 42.94 31st 51.71 11th

Player Stats

Ottawa Senators Boston Bruins
Ottawa Senators Boston Bruins
-- Player # Player #
Goals Mark Stone 14 David Pastrnak 20
Assists Thomas Chabot 25 Brad Marchand 20
Points Mark Stone 34 David Pastrnak 34
Shots Thomas Chabot 82 David Pastrnak 116
TOI/GP Thomas Chabot 24:11 Torey Krug 22:33

Game Notes:

  • The Bruins absolutely love playing the Sens, in particular Marchand and Pastrnak . With an already depleted (and inefficient) defense corps, will McKenna be able to weather the storm?
  • This is a huge game for McKenna against a team that has historically destroyed Ottawa, can he build some confidence from a win tonight?
  • More of McKenna, not to be a pessimist but I don’t expect him to be in nets past the second period.
  • Erik Burgdoerfer draws into the lineup tonight to replace DeMelo, Wolanin really got injured at the wrong time as I think many of us would have loved to see him get a closer look.
  • Some people have wondered if Batherson should go down to the AHL, personally I don’t think he’s underachieving and if anything being without Duchene should give us a good indicator of what he’s capable of.
  • As tough as this game will be, this is one of the best opportunities to capitalize on the Bruins as they will be without Patrice Bergeron, Zdeno Chara and Charlie McAvoy.
  • Both Mark Stone (10 points in the past 7 games) and David Pastrnak (8 points in his last 6 games) are on quite the hot streak, I expect both will have a ton of impact tonight.
  • Special teams should make for an interesting story as both teams are in the top-10 for power play efficiency but also bottom-10 on the penalty kill. With Tkachuk and Marchand in the lineup, I expect to see both PP and PK tested.
  • Melnyk is so poor he can’t afford a new Adidas Sens jersey, splendid!