NHL Hockey

5
Final 1 2 3 OT Tot
San Jose 2 3 0 0 5
Ottawa 1 1 3 1 6
6
4:30 PM PT5:30 PM MT6:30 PM CT7:30 PM ET0:30 GMT8:30 5:30 PM MST7:30 PM EST4:30 UAE (+1)19:30 ETNaN:� BRT, January 5, 2018
Canadian Tire Centre, Kanata, Ontario  Attendance: 16,061

Senators to take their best shot versus Sharks

San Jose Sharks at Ottawa Senators

  1. The Sharks have won each of their last two games versus the Senators after losing their previous five meetings with Ottawa, including a 5-0 home shutout of the Senators on December 9 earlier this season. However, Ottawa has won two of its last three home games versus San Jose.
  2. The Sharks lost, 3-2, in a shootout at Toronto on Thursday. San Jose failed to score on the power play despite totaling five power-play opportunities, its second game this season with at least five power-play opportunities and no power-play goals (also October 20 at New Jersey).
  3. The Senators lost at Detroit, 2-1, in overtime on Wednesday and are now 2-0-9 in games that have ended in overtime or a shootout this season, tied with Buffalo and Anaheim for the most such losses in the NHL. Ottawa has not won a game that ended in overtime or a shootout since a 4-3 overtime win at Colorado on November 10.
  4. Brent Burns had an assist on Thursday, giving him 13 assists since November 25 (the second most among defensemen, behind John Klingberg's 14). Burns has recorded at least one point in each of his last eight games versus Ottawa, recording four goals and eight assists over the eight games (had an assist in seven of the eight games).
  5. Logan Couture has recorded a point in his last four games versus the Senators, lighting the lamp in three of the four contests. Couture had one goal and two assists in the Sharks' win over the Senators earlier this season, but he hasn't scored a goal on the road versus Ottawa since his first ever road game versus the Senators on December 2, 2010.
  6. Ryan Dzingel lit the lamp for the 10th time this season on Wednesday, four shy of his single-season career high set last season. Seven of Dzingel's 10 goals have been scored on the road, including each of his last five; Dzingel has not lit the lamp at home since a November 4 game versus Vegas.

OTTAWA -- The Ottawa Senators have probably already blown their shot at returning to the playoffs with a 4-14-4 dive since mid-November that has seen them fall to 29th in the NHL standings.

But coach Guy Boucher is still imploring them to stop blowing more shots anyway.

Boucher and associate coach Marc Crawford were barking at players in practice Thursday, less than 24 hours after they dropped a 2-1 overtime decision to the Red Wings in Detroit.

That left the Senators (12-17-9) one of three teams that still hasn't reached the 100 goals scored plateau for the season, a sad stat which Boucher figures is related to the fact they rank 24th in average shots per game with 30.34.

"Production is directly related to the work around the net and that's where it has to improve," Boucher said. "Thirteen times (against Detroit), we could have had a shot, but we decided not to shoot, for whatever reason. We're looking for an extra play. In those 13 shots, there might be a goal in there, there might be momentum, there might be a rebound, a face-off in the (offensive) zone. And we have to value that more.

"Most teams that are at the top, they put more pucks on net to create stuff out of nothing and have secondary chances, which is how most goals happen."

A little extra bear-down could pay dividends Friday, when the Senators host a San Jose Sharks team that suffered a hard-fought 3-2 loss to the Maple Leafs in Toronto that was settled in the sixth round of a shootout.

While the Senators are 17 points behind the Leafs for third place in the Atlantic Division, the Sharks (21-12-5) are battling for a playoff spot with the Anaheim Ducks at the cutoff line in the Pacific Division.

The Sharks are now 4-1-1 in their last six games.

"It's a good point," San Jose coach Peter DeBoer told The Mercury News after the third contest of a five-game road trip, which includes four consecutive stops in Canada. "You leave a little disappointed, because we had two or three chances in the third to really get two points and then a couple of chances in the shootout and overtime. It was a good hockey game. We'll take the point."

At Canadian Tire Centre, two of the last three Norris Trophy winners will be facing off when San Jose's Brent Burns meets up with Ottawa's Erik Karlsson. Neither is having an award-winning season, however, as Burns is tied for 10th among defensemen with 27 points while Karlsson is tied for 13th with 25.

Even more glaring, however, is their plus-minus marks. Burns is minus-14 while Karlsson is minus-22.

While Martin Jones could get a rest after stopping 26 Leafs shots on Thursday, Craig Anderson will attempt to get back on the road to respectability. Anderson, who struggled through the first three months, had his best game of the season with 33 saves in Detroit.

Anderson is 5-8-0 with a 3.32 goals-against average and .908 save percentage versus the Sharks.

Updated January 5, 2018

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