NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Saturday, April 3rd
(All times eastern)
Ottawa Senators (43-30-5) at New York Islanders (32-35-10), 2 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The playoff-bound Ottawa Senators will try to record their
seventh victory in a row this afternoon against the New York Islanders at
The Senators stretched their current win streak to six games with Thursday's
4-3 shootout victory over the Hurricanes, clinching a playoff spot in the
Erik Karlsson's second goal of the game with just 7.9 seconds left in
regulation forced overtime, and both Alex Kovalev and Jason Spezza scored in
the shootout for Ottawa, which is on its second-longest winning streak of the
season behind only a club-record 11-game run from Jan. 14-Feb. 4.
"There was a lot of back-and-forth in this game, and overall we controlled the
game," said Karlsson.
Anton Volchenkov also scored, Spezza ended with three assists and Brian
Elliott stopped 28 shots to help Ottawa return to the playoffs for the 12th
time in 13 seasons.
The Senators, currently fifth in the East and seven points ahead of Montreal,
trail the Sabres by five points for first place in the Northeast Division with
four games to play. Buffalo, which has five contests remaining, visits
Montreal this evening.
Ottawa kicks off a three-game road trip tonight, its final games away from
home this season, and has won three straight as the guest. Milan Michalek
hasn't played since March 18 due to a leg injury but is expected to travel
with the team. His return date to action is still unknown, however.
The Islanders are a long shot to make the playoffs -- they trail Boston and
Philadelphia for the final playoff spots by eight points with five games to
play -- but that didn't stop them from ending a 15-game losing streak to the
Flyers on Thursday. New York scored three times in the game's first eight
minutes and rolled to a 6-4 home win.
Blake Comeau netted the Isles' first two tallies for his second straight two-
goal game, while Jon Sim had a goal and two helpers as New York recorded its
first win over Philadelphia since Feb. 12, 2008.
"It's nice to talk about something else other than losing to another team for
so long," said John Tavares. "It's nice to move on and disrupt their flow."
Trent Hunter, Sean Bergenheim and Frans Nielsen each had a goal and an assist
for the Islanders, who have won three of their last four. Martin Biron made 31
stops in the win.
New York has now split the first two games of a four-game homestand and has
won four of its last five as the host.
The Islanders, though, are 0-1-2 versus the Senators this year and have lost
four straight to the club overall. New York will try to avoid getting swept in
the four-game season series for the first time since 2006-07.
Ottawa notched a 4-3 win when the teams last met on Feb. 14 to snap a two-game
slide on Long Island.
04/03 10:30:26 ET