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Game 68 Preview and Open Thread: Ottawa Senators vs. Detroit Red Wings

The first home game of the post-Eugene Melnyk era

Ottawa Senators v Detroit Red Wings Photo by Dave Reginek/NHLI via Getty Images

Less than 48 hours after their victory in Detroit, the Ottawa Senators come home to renew the rivalry (?) against the Red Wings. While the game on Friday had some memorable storylines on the ice, this game will take on a sombre tone as the team honours its late owner, Eugene Melnyk.

The Sens ran these lines and pairings last time:

Tkachuk - Norris - Batherson
Formenton - Stützle - Brown
Jospeh - White - Ennis
Gaudette - Gambrell - Watson

Brännström - Zub
Del Zotto - Hamonic
Holden - Zaitsev

You might remember these Red Wings lines and pairings from such games as the last one:

Bertuzzi - Larkin - Raymond
Erne - Suter - Sundqvist
Vrana - Veleno - Gagner
Hirose - Rasmussen - Zadina

Dekeyser - Seider
Staal - Hronek
Walman- Lindstrom

Game Notes:

  • Just to go over the numbers again, even though these two teams just faced off, Ottawa has the slight advantage in terms of five-on-five offence while defensively both teams have similar five-on-five rates.
  • Ottawa generates at a higher per-60 rate on the powerplay. While Detroit allows less per-60 on the penalty kill, Ottawa has better shorthanded (and five-on-five) goaltending.
  • Overall, by volume (Corsi) Ottawa has the edge but by quality (expected goals) Detroit keeps it close.
  • While the Red Wings didn’t amass a lot of offence from a volume standpoint in the last game, what they did generate came from right in front of the net and Ottawa will want to clean that up if they want to sweep the home-and-home.
  • While the Senators mostly handled Detroit’s top line on Friday, it bears repeating that they need to watch out for Lucas Raymond who had a great game not just in terms of actual goals but also by way of nerd stats.
  • I think most Sens fans can agree that the officiating on Friday seemed adventurous at times and Mads Søgaard spent a lot of time killing penalties in his NHL debut. Naturally we hope for a more predictable pace today for Ottawa.
  • Ottawa demonstrated last game that their penalty kill can catch the Detroit powerplay flat-footed so they’ll probably want to stay aggressive.
  • Going purely by nerd stats, Drake Batherson had a rare game to forget on Friday (in fairness the whole top line struggled in terms of five-on-five expected goals).

Where to Watch/Listen: TVA, TSN5, and TSN1200 @1PM EST

Stats:

Players

Game 68 Ottawa Senators Detroit Red Wings
Game 68 Ottawa Senators Detroit Red Wings
Category Player # Player #
Goals Josh Norris 27 Dylan Larkin 28
Assists Thomas Chabot 28 Moritz Seider 39
Points Brady Tkachuk 47 Dylan Larkin 63
Shots Brady Tkachuk 230 Dylan Larkin 185
TOI Thomas Chabot 26:22 Moritz Seider 23:05