When the final buzzer sounded on Tuesday night, it mercifully ended what was undoubtedly the worst game of the season for the Ottawa Senators. After reeling off three straight wins and picking up at least a point in five straight, the Sens were flat on home ice, falling to the lowly Flyers by a 5-0 final.
The Senators now look to put that effort in their rear-view with a bounce back performance against one of the top teams in the Eastern Conference. The Boston Bruins currently sit second in the East, have won four straight games and are coming off an overtime win over the Columbus Blue Jackets last night. Safe to say the Senators will need to be at their best against the big, bad Bruins.
The Senators have had the benefit of a couple solid days of practice, in which Head Coach Paul MacLean placed a particular emphasis on breaking out of their own end more efficiently. This has definitely been an issue for the Sens through the first 18 games so we’ll see if the practice time makes a difference. Clean breakouts will be extremely important against the hard forechecking Bruins.
Over the past couple seasons, these two teams have played some extremely physical, and always close hockey games. A match up between these two teams always reminds of this hit, which to this day is the hardest hit I’ve ever seen in person. Worried that Boychuk wouldn’t get up but in the end, he actually got up before Neil did.
MacLean will make a couple changes to his lineup with Chris Phillips healthy and ready to return. Phillips draws in and Corvo comes out. Wiercioch will be back in the pressbox while Eric Gryba returns to the blueline. No changes to the forward group. Condra was on the ice for practice yesterday but it sounds like he’ll wait till Sunday to make his return.
Craig Anderson gets the start in the Ottawa goal while the Bruins are expected to counter with Tuukka Rask. After a couple months of fretting over the attendance in the early going, Team President Cyril Leeder spoke to the media and said the organization isn’t really worried about the crowds at the Canadian Tire Centre. The good news is tonight is expected to be the first sell out of the season at the CTC. Should make for a great atmosphere.
Puck drop is scheduled for just after 7:30 PM with the game available on Sportsnet and on the radio at TSN 1200.