The Ottawa Senators take their one game winning streak into the Sunshine State to face the Florida Panthers Thursday night. Like the Senators, the Panthers are looking to the future as they attempt to rebuild during a disappointing 2010-11 season. Both clubs are entering the game on a winning note, with Ottawa’s victory over the New Jersey Devils and Florida’s upset of the Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday night. Craig Anderson (1-0 in his new mask) and Thomas Vokoun are the likely starters.
The Panthers have dropped both meetings with the Senators so far this season, by scores of 5-3 and 5-1, both in Ottawa. They will meet one more time later this month, when the Senators make another trip to Florida.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Erik Condra RW- Had the second two-goal game of his short career Tuesday against the Devils. The product of Notre Dame was the Senators 7th rd pick in 2006, and has made a name for himself in his two professional seasons, earning a shot with the NHL club. Is the biggest member of his line (6′, 188 lbs), dwarfing his usual linemates Marek Svatos and Ryan Shannon (both generously listed at 5’9″).
Stephen Weiss C – The creative centre is the key piece in the future rebuild of the Panthers. Was drafted two spots after Jason Spezza in 2001 (4th overall). After getting off to a relatively slow start to his career, he is now identified as a top talent, and is on pace for his third straight 60 point season. Weiss is signed with the Panthers for two more seasons. Leads the Panthers in assists (26) and points (44) this season.
LAST 5 GAMES
|PP||3/11 (27.3%)||2/14 (14.3%)|
|PK||14/14 (100%)||10/12 (83.3%)|
THREE KEYS TO A SENATORS’ VICTORY
Offense – The Senators have put up 5 goals in each game against the Panthers this season, and they will hope to put up some big numbers against an equally struggling team to gain some confidence and feel good about their game.
Penatly Kill – Has been perfect since allowing their last PP goal to Boston on Feb 18th. Have killed off 27 penalties in a row in that stretch. They want the streak to continue.
Anderson – A revelation in his new surroundings, Anderson never gives off aq sense of panic, which is more than you can say about many of his predecessors in the Ottawa net.
Be sure to check Senshot after the game for a complete recap.
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