Coming off their most impressive win of the season so far, the Senators can begin to answer the question of consistency or flash in the pan as they take on the division leader in the first half of a home and home.
TD Bank Garden
TV: Rogers Sportsnet; RADIO: TSN1200
This is the second of 4 meetings this season between the Bruins and Senators. Ottawa fell behind 2-0 before storming back for a 4-2 win in the first matchup.
Ottawa dominated the conference leading Penguins 5-0, albeit they were injury-plagued and shorthanded. It was one of a handful of quality games played by the Senators so far this season. The Bruins defeated the Predators 6-2 on Monday night to end the pre-Christmas part of their schedule.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Erik Karlsson, OTT – Karlsson is heating up offensively again, with 8 points in his last 6 games, and was only a -1 during that time period. He has the club lead in scoring by three points over Bobby Ryan, and is the lone blueliner in the league to have reached double digits in goals so far this season.
Ryan Spooner, BOS – The Ottawa native has played 10 games with the Bruins, and has posted 7 assists so far, including 3 in Monday’s win over Nashville. He led (and still leads) the AHL’s Providence Bruins with 23 points in 21 games before getting his second recall of the season in early December.
TOP 3 STORYLINES FOR THE GAME
1. Sens For Real? – After Monday’s win over Pittsburgh gave the fans and the team some relief over the Christmas break, the Senators need to legitimize that win by following it up with another one over a quality opponent.
2. Top Line Troubles – The Senators are still looking for the right combination for Jason Spezza’s wings. Both Spezza and Milan Michalek have scored highlight-reel goals in the last week, but consistency is still a concern.
3. Ceci’s Learning Curve Continues – Cody Ceci has made quite the impression in his first 7 game audition. He is making a difficult decision for Senators management. On one hand, he could probably use more time in the AHL while on the other hand he has been one of the 6 best defensemen on a nightly basis.
After missing time with the flu and then a message sending healthy scratch, Marc Methot played one of his best games of the season against the Penguins. Hopefully the message was received and the comeback serves as a notice to the rest of the team and more messages should not be necessary in the future.