NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Sunday, February 26th
(All times Eastern)
New York Islanders (26-27-8) at Ottawa Senators (32-23-8), 5 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Ottawa Senators will try to bounce back after having a
winning streak halted on Saturday, as they host the New York Islanders today
at Scotiabank Place.
The Senators had won four in a row before dropping Saturday's home tilt to the
Boston Bruins. The regulation win was big for the Bruins, who extended their
lead atop the Northeast Division to five points over Ottawa. The Sens are
still sitting seventh in the Eastern Conference and are four points ahead of
Patrice Bergeron tallied twice and added one assist for the Bruins in the
important 5-3 victory. Daniel Alfredsson scored a pair of late goals for the
Senators, who also lost in regulation for the first time since Feb. 7 against
Jason Spezza notched three assists and Erik Karlsson added a goal and two
helpers in defeat. Alex Auld allowed four goals on 37 shots in the loss.
"They're a good hockey club for a reason. We've played some better games
against them but we can't find a way to beat them," Spezza said about Boston,
which is 4-0 against the Senators this season. "We definitely battled them
Karlsson extended his point streak to six games, and his three-point
performance gives him 63 on the season, tying him with Norm Maciver (63 in
1992-93) for the most points in a single season by an Ottawa defenseman.
Spezza also reached a milestone, as his primary assist on Alfredsson's first
goal was the 600th point of his career.
With No. 1 goaltender Craig Anderson sidelined with a lacerated pinky finger
on his right hand, Auld could get the start again today for the Senators.
Robin Lehner, who was recalled from Ottawa's AHL affiliate in Binghamton, has
started just one game at the NHL level this year and that was a win over
Toronto on Oct. 30.
Today's test marks the end of a three-game homestand for the Sens, who are
16-12-3 as the host this season.
The Isles are eight points out of a playoff spot in the East and are coming
off a victory on Friday against the rival Rangers. Matt Moulson's goal in the
fourth round of the shootout lifted the Islanders to a 4-3 home decision over
the Eastern Conference leaders.
After the teams traded goals in the first round and misses in the second and
third, Moulson skated down the center of the ice and snapped a wrister past
the stick side of Martin Biron. The Rangers' John Mitchell had a chance to
keep the shootout going, but his five-hole attempt was turned aside by Evgeni
Nabokov to snap a two-game slide for the Islanders.
"I always liked taking shootout shots," said Moulson. "It's fun for the fans
and that was an exciting finish."
Moulson had a goal and an assist in regulation, while P.A. Parenteau scored
twice for the Islanders, who improved to 8-8 in games played past regulation
this season. Nabokov stopped 33-of-36 shots.
Today's test marks the first stop on a three-game road trip for the Islanders,
who are 12-13-3 away from Nassau Coliseum this season.
The Islanders and Senators have split two games this season, but Ottawa
slammed New York, 6-0, on Long Island earlier this week. Karlsson totaled four
points on two goals and two assists for Ottawa in Monday's rout, as the Sens
won for the seventh time in the last 11 encounters between these clubs. The
teams have split the last eight meetings in Canada's capital city.
02/26 10:56:42 ET