The Nashville Predators have a chance to build off a statement win Tuesday night against the Minnesota Wild with tonight’s game against the Ottawa Senators. Their schedule from here on out is tough, and the Sens have had some issues this season; if the Preds can play up to their potential they could bank a much-needed two points here. However, we’ve seen them struggle against other opponents out or close to out of the playoff picture even very recently, so we’ll see.
The Sens have won three in a row, despite struggles at generating offense and maintaining defense at even strength, converting on the shots they do get, and not allowing opponent power plays to set up camp in their zone. Their own power play and their goaltending have been good under the circumstances, but goalie injuries and the shaky defense have meant that on a teamwide basis it hasn’t been much to write home about even so.
Anton Forsberg has been strong in net for the Sens, putting up a .919 sv% on the season; 21-year-old Mads Sogaard had an excellent single game for them as well. Matt Murray has missed a large portion of the season, adding to a NHL career that hasn’t been marked with a lot of joy, but is currently healthy and expected to back up tonight.
Star defender Thomas Chabot is also injured, having fractured his hand in mid-March. He’s been one of the better play-drivers on a team that’s struggled with driving play, and has been rewarded for this with a team-leading 28 assists in 55 games.
Brady Tkachuk, who leads the team in scoring with 52 points, and Tim Stutzle, who has 43, have tied Chabot’s assists mark, but in 10+ more games (Tkachuk has played 66 and Stutzle 68). Joshua Norris has scored 30 goals, on a team that’s struggled to give him a good way to score them, in just 53 games.
Tkachuk, Norris, Stutzle, and Drake Batherson are the Sens’ top-four scorers; Batherson is the oldest at 23. The future is looking bright in Ottawa.
How to Watch
The game airs at 6 PM Central on Bally Sports South and 102.5 The Game.