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Jesse Zhang The Hockey Writers

Published on Sunday, December 11, 2016





Preview: Senators Look to Bounce Back at the Pond

The Ottawa Senators will be playing their second game in two straight afternoons as they visit the Anaheim Ducks today at the Honda Center. The Senators are coming into this game following a loss to the Los Angeles Kings 4-1 on Saturday, a game in which they were unable to convert on a dominant second period and were victimized by a clock malfunction. Twenty-four hours later, they hope to be able to quickly put that game behind them and make up for that game with a win against the Ducks.

Things will not be any easier, however, as the Ducks have earned 11 out of a possible 14 points in their last seven games. The Ducks are another team, like the Kings, who have elite top-two centres in Ryan Getzlaf and Ryan Kesler. It will be interesting to see how Ducks head coach Randy Carlyle matches up his two centres against Kyle Turris and Derrick Brassard. The Senators will look to keep this game close and stick to their game plan by playing a tight-checking game and limiting Anaheim’s space on the ice.

Ottawa Senators at Anaheim Ducks

Honda Center – 4 p.m. PST

Broadcast channels – PRIME, TSN5

2016-17 Season Series: first match up of the season

Ottawa Senators – 16-10-2 – 34 Points

Second place in the Atlantic Division

Road Record: 7-5-0

Hot Players: Mark Stone, Mike Hoffman, Erik Karlsson

Key Absences: Craig Anderson (leave of absence), Clarke MaCarthur (concussion), Curtis Lazar (concussion)

Projected lines:


Mike Hoffman – Derick Brassard – Mark Stone

Ryan Dzingel – Kyle Turris – Bobby Ryan

Zack Smith – Jean-Gabriel Pageau – Tom Pyatt

Phil Varone – Chris Kelly – Chris Neil


Marc Methot – Erik Karlsson

Dion Phaneuf – Cody Ceci

Andreas Englund – Chris Wideman

Starting goaltender

Mike Condon

Anaheim Ducks – 14-9-5 – 33 Points

Third place in the Pacific Division

Home Record: 9-4-1

Hot Players: Ryan Kesler, Corey Perry, Rickard Rakell

Key Absences: Nate Thompson (achilles), Simon Despres (concussion symptoms), Clayton Stoner (lower body)

Projected lines:


Rickard Rakell – Ryan Getzlaf – Corey Perry

Andrew Cogliano – Ryan Kesler – Jakob Silfverberg

Nick Ritchie – Antoine Vermette – Ondrej Kase

Joseph Cramarossa – Stefan Noesen – Logan Shaw


Cam Fowler – Sami Vatanen

Hampus Lindholm – Josh Manson

Kevin Bieksa – Shea Theodore

Starting Goaltender

John Gibson

1) For the first time, the Senators will be playing an Anaheim team that will dress all three players it received as a result of the Bobby Ryan trade. Jakob Silverberg, Nick Ritchie and Stefan Noesen will all be playing, and each team will try to show which side won the trade.

2) Defenceman Mark Borowiecki received a two-game suspension due to his boarding hit on behind on Los Angeles’ Tyler Toffoli. Andreas Englund draws in, he who played Ottawa’s three games prior to their visit in LA on Saturday. He will likely pair up with Chris Wideman on the third pairing.

3) It was one of Condon’s poorer performances this season, but head coach Guy Boucher will go with him once again. As it is the second game is as many days, it would be ideal for him to go with a different goalie in order to have a fresh presence in net. However, Andrew Hammond has not played an NHL game since October 28 due to suffering a lower-body injury. Surpassed by Condon, Hammond cleared waivers as the Senators sent him down to Binghamton in the AHL after he refused to go for a conditioning stint. It would be completely understandable if the Ottawa coaching staff has little faith in him.

4) Another lineup change has forward Phil Varone replacing Buddy Robinson on the fourth-line wing. Varone has not played in the NHL since October 22, just playing three games so far this season. He has 13 points in 18 games with the Binghamton Senators so far this season.

5) Prior to yesterday’s loss, the Senators have not been limiting to a single goal since November 19. They will look to chip the puck behind Anaheim’s defence and grind their way to the front of the net to score dirty goals against John Gibson. Hoffman and Stone will look to find each other through open seems and get their opportunities in high-percentage scoring areas.

The Senators are 2-0-1 on Sundays so far this season whereas the Ducks are 2-2-1, including an 8-3 loss to the Calgary Flames just last week. Ottawa will need to find a way to capitalize on a strong second period, something they were unable to do yesterday. The Ducks are fifth in the league in second-period goals but are also third-last in goals against in the middle period. If the game is tied or the Senators are trailing after two periods, they will be hard pressed to take the advantage over a team that allows the fewest goals against in the third period.


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