Game 15 Preview and Open Thread: Ottawa Senators @ Winnipeg Jets

Hopefully these two go a little better.

Though they’ve been playing more competitive hockey over the past few games, the Ottawa Senators (2-11-1) have still managed to find the win column just twice on the season. They’ll look to turn their newfound resilience into some tangible success tonight, when they visit the Winnipeg Jets (7-4-1).

The Senators are coming off of three straight losses — one to the Montreal Canadiens and two to the Edmonton Oilers — after finally snapping a nine-game losing streak against les Habitants. Three of those losses came at the hands of the Jets, who are 6-3-1 in their last 10.

Puck drop is set for 8pmEST, and you can catch this one on TSN5. As always, Dean Brown and Gord Wilson will have radio call on TSN 1200.

It appears that there could be a change to Ottawa’s lineup, tonight, as Nick Paul did not partake in this morning’s skate. He is dealing with a minor injury, and is considered a game-time decision. Cedric Paquette skated in his place. Expect Matt Murray to start in goal.

Tkachuk - Tierney - C. Brown
Paul/Paquette - White - Dadonov
Stützle - Stepan - Batherson
Galchenyuk - Norris - Watson

Chabot - Zaitsev
Reilly - Zub
Wolanin - Gudbranson

Murray (starter?)

As always, here are some stats. Courtesy of and Natural Stat Trick:

Player Stats

Game 11OttawaSenatorsWinnipegJets
GoalsTim Stützle4Nikolaj Ehlers9
AssistsNikita Zaitsev6Mark Scheifele12
PointsBrady Tkachuk, Josh Norris8Mark Scheifele17
ShotsBrady Tkachuk62Nikolaj Ehlers46
Time on Ice/GPThomas Chabot25:02Josh Morissey23:58

Team Stats

Game 11OttawaSenatorsWinnipegJets
Goals Against/GP4.231st2.6914th
Shots Against/GP30.821st31.723rd
Powerplay %13.325th22.714th
Penalty Kill %74.125th80.615th
Corsi % (5v5 SVA)48.4619th48.221st
xGF % (5v5 SVA)48.6321st43.4630th

Game Notes:

  • Artem Anisimov cleared waivers, today.
  • Even if Paul can’t go, I wonder if DJ Smith actually deploys Paquette — who hasn’t played since January 31st — on the second line. A younger player like Tim Stützle may be better suited for such an opportunity.
  • Bruce Garrioch reported during the last game that the Senators contemplated benching, or even demoting Drake Batherson. For the life of me, I can’t figure out why. His point totals haven’t been world-beating, but Batherson’s 52.83 Corsi%, 55.73 xGF%, and isolated impact have been solid, all things considered. The textbook definition of a young player needing high-end looks.
  • Further to this point, I’m not sure why Josh Norris is on the fourth line. He’s been just as impressive as Batherson, so having him on the fourth line doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to me.
  • On a more positive note, Artem Zub has been receiving rave reviews, and deservedly so. He’s arguably been Ottawa’s best defender over the past few games, and is looking like a fantastic pickup for a low price. I’d be curious to see how he performs while paired with Thomas Chabot.
  • I would expect Connor Hellebuyck to get the nod for Winnipeg, tonight./

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