10th East (36-32-10) 10th East (36-32-10)

Game Day: TOR @ OTT

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10th East (36-32-10)VS.14th East (30-38-10)

Your Ottawa Senators will play game number 79 tonight as they finish off this season’s version of the Battle of Ontario. With Ottawa leading the season series 3-2, the Toronto Maple Leafs  will look to continue their improbable run towards the playoffs. With Ottawa’s win over the Panthers last game, Ottawa has moved out of the Eastern Conference basement and have the 13th place Islanders in their sights. With a win tonight, Ottawa looks to end Toronto’s dreams of post-season play.

Craig Anderson  will start for Ottawa as he earned a 47 save shutout win the last time he faced the Leafs in his Sens debut. Toronto will counter with James Reimer who has won five out of his last six starts. Due to injuries and trades, Ottawa will only ice eight skaters who started the year in Ottawa. Here’s tonight’s line-up:

Forwards:                                                             Defence:
Michalek – Spezza – Svatos                         Phillips – Lee
Foligno – Smith – Neil                                   Kuba – Benoit
Condra – Da Costa – Shannon                     Hale – Weircoich
Lessard – Winchester – Butler

Goaltenders:
Anderson
Brodeur

The noticeable changes are Svatos skating on the top line instead of Butler. Bobby Bu has struggled lately and Svatos showed some jump last game when he was put with Spezza and Greening. Also new to the line-up is newly signed NCAA free agent Stephane Da Costa. The skilled play-making centre will man the third line. Da Costa also forced Ottawa to send down Colin Greening who was recalled on an emergency basis. Andre Benoit  will also be in the line-up paired with Kuba as Erik Karlsson suffered a laceration on his leg last game and will not suit up for the game.

Toronto who has won five of their last six games will hope to continue their strong play as of late. Being five points out with four games left to play, Toronto will need to run the table these last four games and hope for some luck. If Toronto doesn’t make the playoffs, they are still trying to make sure Boston does not get another lottery pick or top ten pick in this years upcoming draft. Right now the Leafs sit in 9th for the draft, but they can catch the teams ahead and make sure Boston picks out of the top ten.

Players to Watch

Ottawa – Stephane Da Costa  will make his NHL debut tonight and will be wearing number 24. Centering the third line, Da Costa will be given an opportunity to showcase his talent as the Paris native hopes to make the Ottawa squad next year out of camp. Good luck kid.

Toronto – Phil Kessel  has always been an Senator killer. Routinely lighting up Elliott or Leclaire with his wicked wrister, Kessel will see if he can get inside the head of another Sens tender.

Keys to a Ottawa Victory

Get pucks to the Net: Reimer has allowed three goals in his last four starts, all when he got around 30 shots a game. Ottawa needs to throw everything they have at this kid tonight.

Intensity: Toronto is playing for their playoff lives. This is their playoffs and Ottawa will need to match their intensity or they will get steam rolled tonight.

Sens Army: With this the most meaningful game of the year, Ottawa will need Sens Army behind them. Especially when Leafs fans take over our arena, Sens Army will need to support the team even louder tonight. Come Sens fans!!!

Check back here at SenShot after the game for a game recap. Enjoy the game and GO SENS GO!!! 

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