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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Tuesday, December 4th (All times eastern)

Ottawa Senators (16-7-2) at Tampa Bay Lightning (11-13-2), 7:30 p.m.

(Sports Network) - The Ottawa Senators will try to end their free-fall this evening, when they visit the Tampa Bay Lightning at St. Pete Times Forum.

The Senators began this season with an amazing 16-3-0 record, but have dropped six in a row since (0-4-2). Another loss tonight will give Ottawa its longest skid since also dropping seven straight games from February 22 to March 9, 1996.

Ottawa's latest setback came in lopsided fashion Saturday against the visiting New York Rangers. Brendan Shanahan scored a pair of goals and Henrik Lundqvist made 31 saves, as the Rangers dealt the struggling Sens a 5-2 loss.

Joe Corvo and Dany Heatley scored the goals for the Senators. Martin Gerber started the game in net for Ottawa, but was pulled after giving up three goals on 12 shots. Ray Emery stopped 11-of-12 shots the rest of the way.

Heatley and Jason Spezza each extended their points streak to seven games despite the loss. Heatley's goal gives him six tallies and four assists during the stretch. Spezza added two assists on Saturday and has three goals and 10 helpers during his run.

The Sens begin a five-game road trip tonight and have lost three of their last four tests as the visitor. However, Ottawa is still a solid 6-2-1 away from home this season.

The Lightning also recently had a six-game losing streak, but ended the slide with Saturday's win over visiting Boston. Vincent Lecavalier notched two goals and an assist and Johan Holmqvist made 28 saves as the Lightning beat the Bruins, 4-1.

Martin St. Louis and Mathieu Darche also lit the lamp for the Lightning.

Lecavalier is leading the league in scoring with 41 points (18 goals, 23 assists) in 26 games. Last year, he won the Maurice Richard Trophy as the league's top goal-scorer.

Tampa Bay is playing the second test of a four-game homestand tonight. The Lightning are 9-3-1 as the host this season.

Ottawa has taken two of three and 10 of the last 12 meetings with the Lightning. The Sens have also claimed a win in five of their last six trips to Tampa.

12/04 10:28:45 ET


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