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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Thursday, October 18th (All times eastern)

Montreal Canadiens (2-1-2) at Ottawa Senators (6-1-0), 7:30 p.m.

(Sports Network) - The Ottawa Senators are off to a hot start this season and will try to stay on track tonight versus the Montreal Canadiens at Scotiabank Place.

Ottawa leads the NHL with 12 points and is 6-1-0 so far in 2007-08. It opened the campaign with five straight wins before losing to the Carolina Hurricanes on October 11 at home. The Senators rebounded with Saturday's 3-1 victory over the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden, as Dany Heatley, Chris Phillips and Patrick Eaves all scored in a 52-second span during the second period.

Sens netminder Martin Gerber finished with 36 saves, and has a league-leading five wins with a 1.99 GAA and a .941 save percentage in six games. Gerber is expected to be in net this evening even though starting goaltender Ray Emery is back after undergoing offseason wrist surgery.

The Habs, meanwhile, have lost two in a row and are just 2-1-2 on the season. They suffered a 2-1 shootout loss on Tuesday to the Florida Panthers at the Bell Centre.

Alexei Kovalev scored the lone Canadiens goal and goaltender Cristobal Huet made 24 stops between the pipes. Huet was burned for a goal by Nathan Horton with just 10 seconds remaining in regulation to force an overtime period and a shootout.

Ottawa went 5-3 against Montreal last season, including a 3-1 mark at home. The Senators have won three straight, four of five and five of the last eight matchups with the Canadiens.

Montreal has dropped three in a row and seven of nine at Ottawa.

10/18 10:18:41 ET


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