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Game 34 Preview and Open Thread: Boston Bruins at Ottawa Senators

It's back from the Christmas break to face the best team in the league

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

The Christmas break couldn't have come at a better time for the Sens. After a solid start to December, they rattled off three disappointing losses in a row. The positives from Thursday's game against the Capitals were that Cam Talbot was outstanding, and that the team hung around long enough to head to OT. The negative was that the team, even with Tim Stützle back, didn't deserve even a point. With a few days to get healthier (including that cancelled game), let's see how they do. Brännström, Zub, Motte, and Chartier all did not participate in the morning skate. Talbot is the likely starter, but DJ Smith was cagey. Here are tonight's projected lines:

Some thoughts for tonight:

  • Talbot's stats are extreme this season. Of his 19 games played, he has 11 games of .920 or better, but also four games below .820, including that ugly .571 against the Sharks. Still, more often than not he's given us a shot to win.
  • Brady Tkachuk is still chugging along at 37 points in 33 games. If the Sens were 6 points higher in the standings, we'd have so many more articles about what a natural leader he is.
  • Alex DeBrincat has points in 10 of the team's 11 games so far in December.
  • Claude Giroux has gone two games without a point. He's only gone three without a point once this season, so count on a multipoint outing tonight.
  • It bears repeating: the Sens' off-season acquisitions have all been really good. The pro scouting moves have all worked out better than was reasonable to expect.
  • The Bruins have a six-point lead atop the league standings, with games in hand on the next six teams. Just an unreal season out of the Bs.
  • They only have four regulation losses this season, but one of those came against your... Ottawa... Senators!
  • Game gets underway at 7 pm, with coverage on TSN5, NESN, and TSN1200.



Game 31 Ottawa Senators Boston Bruins
Game 31 Ottawa Senators Boston Bruins
Category # Rank # Rank
Goals/GP 3.03 23rd 3.88 2nd
Goals Against/GP 3.21 17th 2.18 1st
Shots/GP 33.2 7th 34.6 3rd
Shots Against/GP 32.4 21st 29.4 9th
Powerplay % 27.9 4th 29.3 3rd
Penalty Kill % 80.0 13th 84.7 3rd
Corsi % (5v5 SVA) 51.28 15th 53.81 5th
xGF % (5v5 SVA) 50.78 17th 56.05 3rd


Game 31 Ottawa Senators Boston Bruins
Game 31 Ottawa Senators Boston Bruins
Category Player # Player #
Goals Claude Giroux 14 David Pastrnak 24
Assists Brady Tkachuk 24 David Pastrnak 23
Points Brady Tkachuk 37 David Pastrnak 47
Shots Brady Tkachuk 143 David Pastrnak 168
Time on Ice/GP Thomas Chabot 25:58 Hampus Lindholm 23:52