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NHL Preview from The Sports Network

Sunday, December 23rd (All times eastern)

Ottawa Senators (22-8-4) at New York Rangers (17-14-4), 7 p.m.

(Sports Network) - The Ottawa Senators and New York Rangers will both try to get back on the winning track when they meet tonight at Madison Square Garden.

The Senators had won six in a row, but have since dropped back-to-back games. Ottawa is still tops in the Eastern Conference with 48 points on the season.

The most recent setback for Ottawa came in overtime Saturday against the visiting Chicago Blackhawks. Jonathan Toews scored 2:07 into OT to give the Blackhawks a 4-3 victory at Scotiabank Place.

Patrick Sharp intercepted a pass in the neutral zone and skated into Ottawa's zone up the left boards. Sharp then cut towards the net and dished a pass to a streaking Toews, who slid the puck past Ray Emery to give Chicago the extra point.

Dany Heatley scored twice while Emery ended with 25 saves for the Senators. Heatley has registered a point in seven straight games and has eight goals and four assists during the stretch.

Ottawa captain Daniel Alfredsson had his 10-game point streak halted on Saturday.

The Senators, who are 11-3-2 as the visiting team this year, is playing the first of two straight on the road tonight. They will also visit Buffalo on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, the Rangers are still locked in a December funk as they are 3-6-1 during the month and have lost their last two contests.

One night after allowing five goals to Minnesota's Marian Gaborik in a 6-3 loss to the Wild, the Rangers were handed Friday's overtime setback in Colorado. Wojtek Wolski's goal just 1:16 into OT sent the Avalanche to a 4-3 win over New York at the Pepsi Center.

The scoring chance came off a Rangers' turnover deep in their own end, and after Jeff Finger ripped a shot toward the net, it trickled between the pads of New York goaltender Henrik Lundqvist before Wolski was able to tip it home.

Brendan Shanahan, Michal Rozsival and Marc Staal all scored, and Lundqvist turned aside 33 shots for the Rangers, who have dropped four of five. Martin Straka and Scott Gomez each had a pair of assists for the Blueshirts, who have lost seven straight versus Colorado.

The Rangers are back home after the two-game swing and are 11-7-0 at the Garden this season. New York has dropped five of its last eight home contests.

Ottawa is 2-1 against the Rangers this season and has won seven of nine and 11 of the last 14 meetings between the clubs. The Sens have also taken four in a row at MSG.

12/23 10:37:45 ET

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