National Hockey League action on Saturday evening and a pair of teams from the Atlantic Division will square off as the Montreal Canadiens rumble with the Ottawa Senators at TD Place Arena in Ottawa, Ontario. This is an outdoor game. The Canadiens come in off a 2-1 OT win over the Devils at home, while the Senators are off a 3-2 home win over the Rangers. Goalie Probables: Montreal will be sending out Carey price and he will be opposed by Craig Anderson.
Plekanec Lifts Canadiens Over Devils In OT
The Montreal Canadiens have had a really rough time putting things together this year so far as they are just 14-18 so far and are in 4th place in the Atlantic Division. They do come in off a 2-1 OT win over the Devils at home and they really needed the win as they had lost their three previous games. All the scoring in regulation came in the 1st period and it was Tomas Plekanec, who scored at the 1:52 mark of OT to give the Canadiens the win. It was his 4th goal of the year. Also scoring for the Habs in the game was Andrew Shaw, which was his 8th of the year. The Canadiens have gone just 5-8 on the road for the year. Grabbing the win against the Devils was Carey Price, who stopped 31 of the 32 shots that he faced in the game to improve to 9-11 with a 3.04 GAA and a .903 save percentage on the year overall, while out on the road he has gone 2-5 with a 4.09 GAA and a .882 save percentage. In his career, he has gone 122-113 with a 2.62 GAA on the road and 216-169 with a 2.35 GAA against the Eastern Conference, while against the Senators he has gone 21-12 with a 2.33 GAA.
The Canadiens have been poor on offense so far as they come in ranked 25th in the league in scoring at 2.68 gpg, while also ranking 7th in shots taken (34.2 spg) and 20th in power play conversions, converting on 17.5% of their chances. At the defensive end of the ice, they have been a bit below average as they come in ranked 22nd in goals allowed, giving up 3.09 gpg, while also ranking 13th in shots allowed (31.4%) and 25th in penalty kill, allowing teams to convert on 21.7% of their chances.
Sens Top Rangers To End Skid
The Ottawa Senators have really been struggling of late as they have lost five of their last six games. The offense has been a huge issue for them of late as they have scored a total of eight goals in their last six games and have been shutout three times in those games. Going back a bit further and we note that they have averaged just 1.64 gpg over their last 14 games. If the offense doesn’t get going for this team, then it will be a long rest of the season for them. They do come in off a nice 3-2 home win over the Rangers, which snapped a five-game skid they were on. Scoring in the win was Bobby Ryan, which was his 2nd of the year, Cody Ceci, which was his 4th of the year and Zack Smith, which was his 2nd of the year. The Sens have gone 5-10 at home so far. Snatching up the win against the Rangers was Craig Anderson, who stopped 27 of the 29 shots that he faced to improve to 8-13 with a 3.05 GAA and a .897 save percentage on the year overall, including 5-8 with a 3.10 GAA and a .895 save percentage here at home. In his career, he has gone 125-117 with a 2.64 GAA in his home games and 158-136 with a 2.49 GAA against the Eastern Conference, including 10-14 with a 3.28 GAA against the Canadiens.
Ottawa has been very average at the offensive end of the ice so far as they come in ranked 23rd in the league in scoring at 2.70 gpg, while also ranking 22nd in shots taken (30.4 spg) and 27th in power play conversions, converting on 15.3% of their chances. At the defensive end of the ice, they have been poor so far as they rank 28th in goals allowed, giving up 3.30 gpg, while also ranking 8th in shots allowed (30.9 spg) and 26th in penalty kill, allowing teams to convert on 23.0% of their chances.
- 6-0 in their last six vs. the Eastern Conference
- 16-5 in their last 21 vs. the Atlantic
- 5-16 in their last 21 vs. a team with a losing record
- 1-6 in their last seven games playing on two days rest
Both of these teams have struggled this year and that makes this one a toughie. The Canadiens may have an advantage in the crease in this one as Carey Price has gone 21-12 with a 2.33 GAA in his career against the Senators, while Craig Anderson has gone just 10-14 with a 3.28 GAA against the Canadiens. Anderson has gone just 5-8 with a 3.10 GAA in his home games this year and I just don’t see him coming up with the effort in this one to lead his team to victory. Take the Habs here, especially since they have taken the last five games in this series.