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Game 43 Preview: Carolina Hurricanes @ Ottawa Senators

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The Sens are right back in action with another 1:00pm matinée game

NHL: Ottawa Senators at Carolina Hurricanes James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

After a disappointing second period collapse against the Wild yesterday afternoon, the Senators will have no time to recover as the Carolina Hurricanes come into town.

The team will get a boost with the return of Jean-Gabriel Pageau after a devastating achilles injury in training camp. Pageau will likely take a while to regain his form, but will add experience and solid three-zone play to the Sens depth forwards.

There was no morning skate, but with the return of Pageau, Boucher may feel comfortable playing 12F and 6D. If he does that, the question marks are whether Nick Paul plays after being a healthy scratch yesterday, or if Rudolfs Balcers gets his second game in a row; and who comes out on D:

Tkachuk - White - Stone
Dzingel - Duchene - Ryan
Smith - Pageau - Boedker
Balcers/Paul - Tierney - Paajarvi

Wolanin - Ceci
Harpur - DeMelo
Borowiecki - Jaros

Hogberg (starter)

The Carolina Hurricanes are still without top centre Jordan Staal, but boast a young, quick forward group and six solid defencemen:

McGinn - Aho - Teravainen
Martinook - Wallmark - Williams
Svechnikov - Rask - Ferland
Foegele - Bishop - Maelananen

Slavin - Pesce
de Haan - Faulk
Van Riemsdyk - Hamilton

McElhinney (starter)

Extras: Jordan Staal (inj.)

Game Notes

  • With the loss yesterday, the Sens have been defeated in seven straight. Their 35 points rank last in the league, six points back of 20th place Carolina. For your information, the last Wild Card spot in the East is currently occupied by the Montréal Canadiens, who sit 14th with 49 points.
  • Although Carolina is also chasing the playoffs, the team could not be more different than Ottawa. They rank second in the league in 5-on-5 shot shares and first in expected goals, but are being doomed by the league’s worst shooting percentage at 6.0%. Yes, you’re reading those team stats right at the bottom: the Canes lead the league in terms of generating shots for AND preventing shots against. The shot count could be record-setting ugly tonight.
  • Top rookie Andrei Svechnikov is fourth in rookie scoring with 19 points — one point behind a three-way tie at 20 that includes Brady Tkachuk, Jesperi Kotkaniemi, and Rasmus Dahlin. Svechnikov leads all rookies with 108 shots on goal.
  • This is the first of three meetings with the Canes this season, so I’ll introduce their fourth line — currently featuring players who are all in their first full NHL campaigns with the team.
  • Warren Foegele is the standout, as a former OHL Playoffs MVP with the Erie Otters and a Rudolfs Balcers-esque rookie campaign last season with 46 points in 73 games with Charlotte. He only has 7 points in 40 NHL games this season — and I’m sure the Canes were expecting more from the 22-year-old — but he has the talent to score.
  • Also 22, centre Clark Bishop is the former captain of Drake Batherson’s Cape Breton Streaming Eagles, where he hovered around 0.64 points-per-game. Bishop split time between the ECHL and AHL in his rookie season, and had a solid 28 points in 68 games with Charlotte the year after. This year, he’s played 20 games with the Canes, putting up 1G and 2A for 3P.
  • 24-year-old Saku Mäenalanen was part of Finland’s first World Juniors gold of this past decade back in 2013-14, where he led the tournament in goals with 7 and added four assists. He spent the last four seasons steadily growing his game with Kärpät in Liiga, culminating in a championship winning season, his most productive to date (46P in 59GP), and a spot on Finland’s World Championships team. This will be his fourth NHL game, as he started in Charlotte — putting up 14 points in 31 games. Yes, this is a “First NHL Goal” alert.

Team Stats

Category Ottawa Senators Los Angeles Kings
Category Ottawa Senators Los Angeles Kings
-- Value Rank Value Rank
Goals/GP 3.14 11th 2.23 31st
Goals Against/GP 3.93 31st 2.95 17th
Shots/GP 29.1 25th 28.2 29th
Shots Against/GP 37.0 31st 31.3 15th
Powerplay % 21.4 12th 14.9 27th
Penalty Kill % 74.4 30th 74.6 29th
Corsi (5v5, Score & Venue Adjusted) 43.05 31st 47.24 25th
Fenwick (5v5, SVA) 43.39 31st 47.40 24th

Player Stats

Ottawa Senators Los Angeles Kings
Ottawa Senators Los Angeles Kings
-- Player # Player #
Goals Mark Stone 20 Anze Kopitar / Dustin Brown 11
Assists Mark Stone / Thomas Chabot 28 Drew Doughty 21
Points Mark Stone 48 Anze Kopitar 29
Shots Mark Stone 104 Tyler Toffoli 122
TOI/GP Thomas Chabot 23:52 Drew Doughty 26:32