Game 48 Preview: Ottawa Senators @ Carolina Hurricanes

<em>Cane</em> they win this one?

It’s a Sens game day, with the NHL returning to action following the All-Star weekend in Tampa Bay. The Ottawa Senators (15-23-5) are trying to break a five-game losing streak that began after the bye week. They face the Carolina Hurricanes (22-19-8), who are fighting for a playoff position in the compact Metropolitan division.

Colin White, Chris DiDomenico and Erik Burgdoerfer were sent to Belleville for two games over the weekend, although they’re all back on the main roster in preparation for tonight. With the injuries mounting (Stone, Thompson, Oduya and Dumont are all out of the lineup), expect the two forwards to play, with Burgdoerfer being a healthy scratch.

Craig Anderson will be tonight’s starter, with Cam Ward likely at the other end of the rink.

Here are the expected lines and pairings from practice:

Hoffman - Duchene - Ryan
Paajarvi - Brassard - Dzingel
Smith - Pageau - Pyatt
Burrows - White - DiDomenico

Chabot - Karlsson
Phaneuf - Ceci
Borowiecki - Claesson

Anderson (starter)

Here are some notes:

  • Magnus Paajarvi will make his Sens debut this evening. He’ll wear #56 (his father’s birth year), being the third Senator to don the number (Petr Schastlivy and Lance Pitlick are the others).
  • The Swede has four points in 44 games this season for St. Louis. He was playing alongside Brassard and Dzingel in practice, although there’s always bound to be a mid-game shakeup with Guy Boucher.
  • Mark Stone is expected to be close to a return, which is fantastic news for the Sens’ offence, as it’s been completely absent without their leading goal scorer.
  • The Canes’ leading goal scorer, Sebastian Aho, draws back into Carolina’s lineup for the first time since January 14th. He missed four games due to both a concussion and lower-body injury.
  • With the Hurricanes being recently purchased by Tom Dundon (bit jealous), changes are already becoming extremely evident. He’s set a plan that allows fans to sit in the lower bowl, with the priority being to fill it up first. There’s a lot of factors to consider here, although at first glance it seems like an odd move that takes away the incentive to buy tickets in the lower bowl. Would be curious to know your thoughts in the comments.
  • As mentioned in this morning’s prospect update, it’s Colin White and Thomas Chabot’s birthday today!
  • Start time is 7:00 p.m./

Here’s a comparison of the two teams’ stats:

Team Stats

Goals against/GP3.4430th2.563rd
Shots against/GP33.025th29.32nd
Powerplay %16.726th23.54th
Penalty Kill %76.227th83.34th
Corsi (5v5, Score & Venue Adjusted)46.3229th53.972nd
Fenwick (5v5, SVA)46.9427th54.011st

Player Stats

GoalsMatt Duchene27Brad Marchand34
AssistsErik Karlsson (out)53Brad Marchand51
PointsKarlsson/Stone (both out)62Brad Marchand85
ShotsMike Hoffman253David Pastrnak236
TOI/GPErik Karlsson (out)26:44Zdeno Chara22:53

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