In 2016, the Sens knocked Boston out of the playoffs for the second year in a row, beating them 6-1 on the final day of the regular season to prevent them from catching the Red Wings for the third spot in the Atlantic.
In 2017, Boston finally succeeded in making the playoffs... only to be defeated by the Sens in the first round.
Now it’s 2018, and the NHL’s sneaky scheduling to try and make it four in a row unfortunately won’t be happening. The Bruins have long clinched their playoff position, and are looking to catch the Tampa Bay Lightning for first place in the Eastern Conference. Ottawa, meanwhile, clinched the second highest draft odds with last night’s 4-0 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Mark Stone and Erik Karlsson are still out of the lineup, with Ben Harpur joining them after being injured in yesterday’s game. The team has called up Andreas Englund from Belleville, who played five games for the big club last season.
Players out of the lineup for Boston are: Rick Nash, Sean Kuraly, Riley Nash and Matt Grzelcyk. Tommy Wingels will be coming back into their lineup.
It’ll be a battle of the backups, as Danny Taylor will play his first game of the season for Ottawa, with Anton Khudobin starting on the other end.
Here are the expected lines for Ottawa:
Burrows - Pageau - Ryan
Paajarvi - Smith - Pyatt
McCormick - Chlapik - Dzingel
Borowiecki - Chabot
Claesson - Ceci
Englund - Wolanin
- Tonight will be Danny Taylor’s fourth career NHL game, with his last one over five years ago on February 18th, 2013 (he stopped 33 of 37 shots against the Phoenix Coyotes). After playing in Europe for a bit, his return to North America has been shaky, with an even 90% save percentage in 32 games for the bottom-feeding Belleville Senators.
- A few players could match or surpass career highs tonight:
— Magnus Paajarvi for goals (high: 9, current: 8)
— Mike Hoffman for assists (high: 35, current: 34)
— Ryan Dzingel for assists (high: 18, current: 18)
— Tom Pyatt for points (high: 23, current 22)
— Mark Borowiecki for points (high: 11, current: 11)
- Cody Ceci and Mike Hoffman are the only two players to play all of the Sens’ 82 games this season.
- Unless Mike Hoffman has a crazy game tonight, the season will finish with Erik Karlsson leading the team in points (tied with Mark Stone) for his fifth consecutive season. He’s also comfortably in first place amongst defencemen this season for points-per-game.
- And lastly, it pains me to bring up a tragic event in two consecutive days, although the hockey community aches today for the Humboldt Broncos, a hockey club from Saskatchewan who lost at least many members of their team in a tragic bus crash. Our deepest sympathies to their families and all those affected — the hockey community stands with you.
|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|
|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|