NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Thursday, November 7th
(All times Eastern)
Montreal Canadiens (8-7-1) at Ottawa Senators (5-6-4), 7 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Ottawa Senators picked up their first victory in
weeks in their last trip to the ice.
Now, Paul MacLean's club will try to post consecutive wins for only the second
time this season when they welcome the sliding Montreal Canadiens for
Thursday's Atlantic Division clash at Canadian Tire Centre.
The Senators notched a 4-1 win Tuesday at Columbus, ending a five-game skid
with their first victory since a 6-1 rout at Detroit on Oct. 23. The triumph
over the Blue Jackets also gives Ottawa points in three straight games after
it opened November with consecutive shootout losses versus the New York
Islanders and Dallas Stars.
Robin Lehner made 32 saves to earn his first win of the season, helping the
Sens defeat Columbus at Nationwide Arena. Erik Karlsson opened and closed the
scoring for Ottawa, while Clarke MacArthur and Chris Neil had the other
"As a team and as a group, I thought we played a real solid 60 minutes," said
With regular No. 1 goaltender Craig Anderson expected to sit out a second
straight game with a head/neck injury, Lehner should get another start on
Ottawa is kicking off a five-game homestand on Thursday, and although the club
is just 1-3-2 as the host this season, the Sens have won their past three home
tilts against the Canadiens. The Atlantic Division rivals have split the last
eight overall in the regular-season series.
This is the first of five scheduled meetings between the Habs and Sens this
season. Thursday's tilt also marks the first encounter between the teams since
Ottawa eliminated Montreal in five games during last spring's Eastern
Montreal enters Thursday on a three-game slide, the club's longest skid of the
season. However, after dropping two straight road games in regulation, the
Habs were at least able to earn a point in Tuesday's home shootout loss
against St. Louis.
Former Canadiens goaltender Jaroslav Halak stopped a penalty shot with 48.9
seconds left in regulation and made three saves in the shootout to lead the
Blues to a 3-2 win at the Bell Centre. Halak deflected Tomas Plekanec's
penalty shot with his right arm after David Backes was whistled for dislodging
the St. Louis net late in the third period.
Later, T.J. Oshie flipped the puck into the top right corner of the net to
beat Montreal goalie Carey Price for the only successful shootout try by
either team. Halak stopped Alex Galchenyuk and Brendan Gallagher, and Max
Pacioretty sent a shot wide on Montreal's last chance.
Rene Bourque and Michael Bournival scored for the Canadiens, while Price had
30 saves in defeat.
"It wasn't what we wanted but we earned a point," said Montreal coach Michel
Therrien. "No doubt they're a good offensive team with lots of speed."
Price has excellent career numbers against the Senators and will get the start
in net tonight. He is 14-5-3 with a 2.11 goals against average in 24 career
outings versus Ottawa.
11/07 10:48:42 ET