(21-32-9, 15th East)
With the trade deadline now in the rear-view mirror, the Senators can now get down to fulfilling coach Clouston’s wishes to “piss off the scouts” by winning a few games and moving up in the standings. It will be a tall task tonight as they face perhaps the league’s hottest team in the divisional rival Boston Bruins. The Bruins have won 5 games in a row (all on the road), including a Western Canada road trip that saw them defeat the West-leading Vancouver Canucks.
The Binghamton shuffle is in full effect again. Despite Gonchar, Neil and Winchester returning, Carkner and Michalek will be sidelined. Derek Smith (D) and Colin Greening (F) will join newly acquired F Ryan Potulny in the Ottawa lineup tonight.
This will be the fifth meeting of the season between the clubs. Boston holds a 3-1 edge. Shutouts are the name of the game between the two clubs as 3 of the four games so far have resulted in one team being blanked. Tim Thomas has shut the door on the Senators twice, while Brian Elliott managed the feat once.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Milan Lucic, LW – After an off year in 2009-10, Lucic has had a monster comeback year, already seeting career highs in goals (27) and points (46). The fearsome power forward is back on his game. Has been the catalyst for the Bruins on this road trip, as he has 8 points in the five games so far. The only team to hold him pointless in that stint – the Ottawa Senators.
Ryan Potulny, F – Will make his Senators’ debut after yesterday’s trade from Chicago. Will be treating this as an audition for next season as he looks to prove himself at the NHL level. Looks like he will start his Senators career skating on a line with Jesse Winchester and Francis Lessard, but that may change quickly.
LAST 5 GAMES
|PP||2/13 (15.4%)||4/19 (21.1%)|
|PK||8/10 (80.0%)||21/22 (95.5%)|
THREE KEYS TO A SENATORS VICTORY
Stay out of the Box- Although the Senators PF has been exceptional of late, with the combination of Kaberle and Chara on the point it is only a matter of time before they start to connect.
Spezza -Butler-? - The line needs to continue to dominate whoever they match up with if the Senators have any hope of winning this game. Whoever lines up in Michalek’s spot (and it looks like Colin Greening will start there) will have pressure on him.
The Auditions Continue - Two more players will be making their Senators debut tonight (Smith & Potulny). With spots available on the roster for next season, these are the times for players to show their wares and catch the attention of the current and future brass.
Check back here at SenShot for a complete post-game wrap-up.
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