Back home from a successful 2 game swing through Western Canada, the Senators return home to get some first time action for a number of players, along with some highly awaited home debuts against a familiar opponent.
Canadian Tire Centre
7:30 PM EST
TSN; Radio: TEAM1200
Tickets: Senators vs. Maple Leafs tickets
Last Season: The Leafs had the upper hand on the undermanned Senators last season, sporting a 4-1 record against their provincial counterparts. This record included shutouts from both James Reimer and Ben Scrivens. Toronto outscored Ottawa 19-8 in the 5 games.
Last Games: Ottawa finished a sweep of their Western swing, beating the Flames 4-2. The Leafs are coming off a 3-2 shootout loss to the Flyers.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Jean-Gabriel Pageau, OTT – The darling of the Senators playoff run last season, he will be fighting for a roster spot with a healthy lineup and contract situations are stacked against him. The Senators depth up the middle might see him ticketed for Binghamton to start until an injury replacement is required. For him to gain a roster spot out of camp, he will have to vastly outplay those who would require waivers to get sent down.
Nazem Kadri, TOR – After being absent from training camp for the first couple of days, Kadri finally relented and signed a two year deal. Now the task for Kadri is to show that he is deserving of the long-term, big-money deal he was looking for this summer. He finished with 44 points in 48 games last season, in the top 25 of the NHL scoring race.
TOP 3 STORYLINES
1. Bad Blood: As per usual, expect the bad blood to kick off early and often in the battle of Ontario. Last season featured a number of bouts and not the least of which was Fraser McLaren knocking Dave Dziurzynski out of action in a one-sided bout, one of the tipping points that led to Bryan Murray acquiring Matt Kassian.
2. Anderson Vezina Quest Begins: Robbed of the Vezina last season with the ankle injury that forced him out of action, Craig Anderson will look to get on the right track against the Leafs in his first start of the preseason. If he can get close to repeating his performance of last season, he will be in the mix for postseason honors.
3. Coming in Hot – The Senators prized off-season acquisition will make his home debut as Bobby Ryan will line up alongside Jason Spezza and Milan Michalek. It will be the first chance for Sens fans to see what the hype is about in person.
The Ottawa franchise is already 1-0 against Toronto this season with their decisive win over the Leafs in the London rookie tournament. The Senators will be dressing 7 players from that game. No matter the level, no matter what part of the season, its always good to beat the Blue team.