Fresh off yesterday’s loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs, D.J. Smith’s Ottawa Senators are right back in action for a 6:00pm EST start against the Dallas Stars.
In terms of end-to-end action, shot attempts, and expected goals, it was the Sens best showing against the Leafs this season, with a fair amount of positives for the team to build on. To that end, we don’t expect much in the way of lineup changes, although Craig Anderson relieving Marcus Hogberg surely throws a wrench in the goalie plans. The Sens have also recalled Andreas Englund from Belleville, but we’re unsure as to whether he’ll make his way into the game or if a current defender is struggling with an injury.
Namestnikov - Tierney - Batherson
Paul - Anisimov - Duclair
Ennis - White - Sabourin
Chabot - DeMelo
Reilly - Zaitsev
Hainsey - Goloubef
Meanwhile, here’s what we can expect from Rick Bowness’ Stars, who have Martin Hanzal and Alex Radulov on the IR, but ex-Sens netminder Ben Bishop playing very well in net:
Benn - Dickinson - Gurianov
Cogliano - Faksa - Comeau
Janmark - Pavelski - Robertson
Lindell - Klingberg
Heiskanen - Johns
Oleksiak - Sekera
- Thomas Chabot danced last night to a 65% CF% rating, and will be compared and contrasted to 20-year-old Miro Heiskanen tonight. The Stars slick Swede was supposedly the player Ottawa targeted when Dallas was after Erik Karlsson, and is one of the game’s top young defenders with Cale Makar and Quinn Hughes.
- The Stars have two other players 22 and under playing minutes right now. 2015 12th overall pick Denis Gurianov has 17 goals and 23 points in his first full NHL season after three years with the Texas Stars, while 2017 second rounder Jason Robertson will be playing in his third NHL game. He has 35 points in 49 games in the AHL, and recorded his first NHL point (an assist!) last week.
- The Stars are a really weird team overall, with league-average offence but solid team defence. They generally do well from an xG standpoint, as Ben Bishop and Anton Khudobin are a top-tier tandem in net, and there’s enough skill up front with Tyler Seguin and Jamie Benn to pot a couple of goals a night even if they lose the shot battle.
- The top three teams in the Central, St. Louis (74 pts), Dallas (73 pts), and Colorado (72 pts) basically have their division on lockdown, with their closest competitor (Nashville) nine points back.
Here are some statistics, with most from NHL.com, and Corsi% and xGF% from NaturalStatTrick.com.
|Goals||Anthony Duclair||23||Anze Kopitar||21|
|Assists||Thomas Chabot||33||Anze Kopitar||41|
|Points||Brady Tkachuk||43||Anze Kopitar||62|
|Shots||Brady Tkachuk||258||Jeff Carter||182|
|TOI/GP||Thomas Chabot||26:02||Drew Doughty||25:51|
|Penalty Kill %||76.1||26th||77.1||26th|
|Corsi % (5v5, Score and Venue Adjusted)||48.25||26th||53.13||4th|
|xGF% (5v5, SVA)||49.74||19th||51.94||8th|