Game 34 Preview + Open Thread: Ottawa Senators @ Washington Capitals

Ottawa faces off in the other nation’s capital looking to avoid a 3-game losing streak

The Ottawa Senators almost completed an incredible comeback on Thursday against the Pittsburgh Penguins, which would’ve been their second great comeback in less than a week. However, after the 6-4 loss, they have now lost back-to-back games and are looking to stop the skid while they visit the Washington Capitals.

The last time the Senators played the Capitals, Drake Batherson got his first career hat-trick, yet they still lost a wild 7-5 game in October. Since then, the Capitals have been in a playoff spot with 53 points in 41 games, although they are 4th in the Metropolitan (and therefore a wildcard position). They aren’t the same team from years past, but Alex Ovechkin is somehow just as good as ever (and maybe even better??), so they’re not a team to take lightly.

Here are the lines for tonight (same as on Thursday, the only difference is Matt Murray will start and Anton Forsberg will back him up):

Vitek Vanecek gets the start for Washington.

Game Notes:

  • It appears that Erik Brännström has finally earned the trust of DJ Smith:/

He played 23:28 on Thursday, the second-most of his career, and it’ll be interesting to see if that trend continues.

  • I wonder if Brännström will ever get moved to the right side again briefly in the game, as he did play with Thomas Chabot at points on Thursday. It’s something to monitor.
  • Ovechkin leads the league with 56 points in 41 games. He’s on pace for a whopping 112 points as a 36-year-old.
  • Can Alex Formenton continue his hot streak? He has 11 points in his last 12 games.
  • Ottawa is 41-48-5-5 all-time against the Capitals and only 13-20-3-3 in Washington.
  • Vitek Vanecek has never faced the Senators and has a .909 SV% on the season (.908% career).
  • The Tkachuk/Norris/Batherson line continues to be incredibly productive, and don’t look for them to slow down anytime soon./

Team Stats:

Team Stats

Game 38OttawaSenatorsAnaheimDucks
Goals Against/GP3.4327th2.8315th
Shots Against/GP33.627th33.126th
Powerplay %18.520th25.48th
Penalty Kill %80.316th83.09th
Corsi % (5v5 SVA)46.3430th48.2920th
xGF % (5v5 SVA)46.4424th47.6722nd

Player Stats:

Player Stats

Game 42OttawaSenatorsCarolinaHurricanes
GoalsJosh Norris18Sebastian Aho19
AssistsDrake Batherson21Sebastian Aho26
PointsDrake Batherson34Sebastian Aho45
ShotsBrady Tkachuk133Andrei Svechnikov130
Time on Ice/GPThomas Chabot27:08:00Jaccob Slavin23:51:00

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