The Ottawa Senators (18-24-11) are getting set to host the Colorado Avalanche (29-16-6) at Canadian Tire Centre. Puck drop is at 7:30pm EST.
The Sens are coming in having lost 3 games in a row and 4 of their last 5 games. While the losses have been piling up recently for the rebuilding Senators, many of them have come in extra time. Since December 11th, the Sens have lost 17 games total and 10 out of those have come either in overtime or a shootout.
The Ottawa Senators lost to the Anaheim Ducks 3-2 on Tuesday night in a shootout. Drake Batherson notched a powerplay goal for his second of the season and Artem Anisimov also scored a powerplay goal for his 10th of the year.
The Avalanche roll into Ottawa on a bit of a hot streak. Winners in 4 of their last 5 and with points in 6 of their last 7, they are looking to pick up any points they can for the playoff hunt. They currently sit 3rd in the Central Division, 1 point behind the Dallas Stars with 2 games in hand.
While their top line is one of the best in the NHL, it was the Avs’ depth that provided the scoring on Tuesday night in Buffalo. Nazem Kadri, Valeri Nichushkin, Andre Burakovsky and Nikita Zadorov all had multi-point nights leading Colorado to a 6-1 victory over the Sabres.
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The Sens sit tied for 26th in the NHL in goals against per game (3.28) while the Avs are 1st in goals scored per game (3.69). Could be a rough night for the Sens defensively if the Avs are on their game.
DJ Smith will likely start Marcus Hogberg for the second straight game. He made 26 saves in Tuesday night’s shootout loss and he’s been the Senators’ go-to goalie for the last month or so.
Jared Bednar will likely turn to his #1 Philipp Grubauer, who only had to make 23 saves in his last start against the Sabres.
This will be the Avs 3rd game of a 5 game road trip. The Senators head out to Winnipeg after tonight’s game. These 2 teams will meet again in 5 days at the Pepsi Center when the Senators take a road trip to Denver.
Jack’s 2 players to watch:
Ottawa Senators: Anthony Duclair is now goalless in his last 15 games. A very disappointing stretch for a player who was having a breakout season. He’s had plenty of chances and it’s only a matter of time before one finds the back of the net. Is tonight the night the slump finally ends?
Colorado Avalanche: Cale Makar is playing his first game against the Senators in his young career. The Calder candidate has been turning heads all season and has 38 points in 43 games. With the way Quinn Hughes has been playing, the race for the Calder trophy this season is as tight as it’s ever been. I’ll be watching him closely tonight to get a sense of what Makar is all about.