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Game 5 Preview and Open Thread: New York Rangers @ Ottawa Senators

Let’s get back into the win column today!

NHL: NOV 22 Rangers at Senators Photo by Steven Kingsman/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Ottawa Senators were looking for a much better start to the season compared to last year, and they've delivered so far by winning two of their first four games as opposed to two of their first eleven (best not to think about that too much). Despite losing 2-1 to the San Jose Sharks on Thursday, it wasn't for a lack of effort at both ends of the ice.

If the Sens want to get back into the win column against the New York Rangers, they’ll need to do a much better job of converting their scoring chances. With the weaker of New York's goaltenders in Alexandar Georgiev starting in goal, the opportunity to raise the team shooting percentage is there.

Another plus for Ottawa is that the Rangers haven’t really been a great team at driving play for the past few seasons; they were vastly outplayed at 5-on-5 in three of their five games thus far. One would also have to think it’s only a matter of time before Tim Stützle puts a puck in the net, what with the numerous chances he’s had early on.

If the Senators can put forward the same effort from Thursday, and add a couple of finishing touches, we could very well see them win their third game of the season today, a feat that required sixteen games in 2021.

Based on recent media availability, here’s how we can expect the team to line up tonight, with Matt Murray starting in goal:

Tkachuk - Norris - Batherson
Stützle - Paul - C. Brown
Formenton - Tierney - Ennis
Sanford - Shaw - Kelly

Chabot - Zub
Holden - Zaitsev
Mete - J. Brown

Game Notes:

  • Shane Pinto suffered a shoulder injury on Thursday, and won’t play tonight. Head coach D.J. Smith has confirmed that Nick Paul will fill in on the second line, centering Stützle and Connor Brown. Parker Kelly will draw back into the lineup as well, after being a healthy scratch against San Jose.
  • It may take a few games for Brady Tkachuk to get back to peak performance. An assist on Drake Batherson’s first goal of the year was a good start, but with the absurd amount of injuries to Ottawa’s forward corps, the responsibility falls on that top line to score goals. One per game likely won’t be enough.
  • Both the Sens and the Rangers are among the worst faceoff teams in the league (NYR is last, while OTT is third-last). Hard to say which team will have the edge today, but Paul has been one of a few above-average Senators in the dot in the past two seasons and could be a difference-maker.
  • Puck drop is scheduled for 1:00 pm EST, and you can watch the game on TSN5 or RDS, or listen on TSN1200.

Stats:

Team Stats

Game 5 Ottawa Senators New York Rangers
Game 5 Ottawa Senators New York Rangers
Category # Rank # Rank
Goals/GP 2.00 27th 2.20 24th
Goals Against/GP 2.25 8th 2.20 6th
Shots/GP 28.8 25th 26.8 30th
Shots Against/GP 33.8 21st 31.0 15th
Powerplay % 33.3 5th 10.0 28th
Penalty Kill % 76.9 20th 76.5 22nd
Corsi % (5v5 SVA) 48.99 19th 49.11 18th
xGF % (5v5 SVA) 50.80 16th 47.85 22nd

Player Stats

Game 5 Ottawa Senators New York Rangers
Game 5 Ottawa Senators New York Rangers
Category Player # Player #
Goals Chris Tierney 14 Chris Kreider 3
Assists Connor Brown 22 Mika Zibanejad 4
Points Chris Tierney, Tyler Ennis, Connor Brown 26 Mika Zibanejad 5
Shots Nick Paul 15 Mika Zibanejad 17
Time on Ice/GP Thomas Chabot 26:52 Adam Fox 25:25