NHL Preview from The Sports Network
Saturday, February 16th (All times eastern)
New Jersey Devils (32-21-5) at Ottawa Senators (34-19-5), 7 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Ottawa Senators will try to avoid their second straight setback to New Jersey and third straight loss overall when they welcome the Devils for tonight's showdown at Scotiabank Place.
After getting slammed, 5-1, by visiting Buffalo on Tuesday, the Senators were handed a close loss in New Jersey the following night. Brian Gionta's goal 2:14 into overtime lifted the Devils to the 3-2 decision at the Prudential Center.
The Devils' Jamie Langenbrunner wouldn't give up the puck in the neutral zone, then banked it off the boards before catching up to the disc and firing a shot toward the net. The puck ricocheted off a skate, Langenbrunner collected it again and sent a backhand pass toward the net, where Gionta knocked it home.
Luke Richardson had a goal and an assist for Ottawa, while Randy Robitaille also tallied in the loss.
Senators goaltender Martin Gerber turned aside 28-of-31 shots, but has failed to win in his last three starts and surrendered 10 goals on 85 chances during that stretch.
The Senators, who lead the Northeast Division and Eastern Conference with 73 points, have now lost five of their last seven contests following Wednesday's setback.
Ottawa will be kicking off a three-game homestand tonight and has a strong 18-10-2 mark as the host this season. Ottawa will also welcome Philadelphia and Columbus during its residency.
The Devils were last in action on Friday, when the club was handed a drawn-out loss at home to Atlanta. Pascal Dupuis netted the game-winning goal in the 10th round of the shootout as the Thrashers rallied for a thrilling 4-3 decision at the Prudential Center.
Atlanta's Marian Hossa sent the contest into overtime when he jammed a shot past Martin Brodeur with just 18.1 seconds remaining in the third period.
Brian Gionta, Zach Parise and John Madden had the regulation goals for New Jersey, the co-leaders of the Atlantic Division along with Pittsburgh. Brodeur made 29 saves heading into the shootout but only managed to thwart 7-of-10 Atlanta skaters during the deciding phase.
Ottawa had defeated the Devils in the first two 2007-08 meetings between these teams, including a 4-2 triumph at Scotiabank Place in October, prior to Wednesday's loss. New Jersey has won four of its last six encounters with the Sens, however.
02/16 10:30:00 ET