Posted March 15, 2012 on
AP on Fox
Currently seventh in the Eastern Conference, the Ottawa Senators have held their own against most teams in the league.
The Montreal Canadiens, however, have surprisingly had their number.
Ottawa tries to avoid a fourth loss in five meetings with Montreal this season as the teams conclude a home-and-home set Friday night at Scotiabank Place.
While most teams in the Senators' position would have been looking forward to back-to-back matchups with the last-place Canadiens (28-32-11), they haven't been able to figure out their Northeast Division rivals.
After taking four of six from Ottawa (36-25-10) in 2010-11, Montreal improved to 3-0-1 this season with Wednesday's 3-2 shootout home win.
"We just play well against them," said Canadiens goalie Carey Price, who's been in goal for all four meetings. "We're a pretty skilled team and so are they."
The Senators, meanwhile, gained some ground on division-leading Boston, but know they need to bring a better effort going forward if they're going to catch the Bruins.
"We were happy to get a point on the road," coach Paul MacLean said. "It was a little close to the vest on their part and on ours, but this team doesn't bring the best out in us, for some reason.
"We have another opportunity on Friday to find a solution. We don't seem to be able to skate like we do when we're successful. We have to find a solution to that."
Getting back on track at home, though, could prove difficult. The Senators are just 4-5-3 over their last 12 home games overall and have been outscored 20-7 in dropping four of five to Montreal on their own ice.
Coming off back-to-back victories for the first time in over a month, Price, who made 32 saves in Saturday's 4-1 win at Vancouver, has to like his chances of keeping things going Friday. Price has compiled a 1.55 goals-against average while posting a 6-0-0 record in his last seven visits to Ottawa.
Price is 11-3-1 with three shutouts in his last 16 overall meetings in the series.
With No. 1 goaltender Craig Anderson still sidelined with a lacerated finger, Ben Bishop has started each of the last four games, going 2-0-2 with a 2.16 GAA. He made 24 saves Wednesday.
Montreal's Max Pacioretty extended his point streak to seven games with an assist Wednesday. He's notched five goals and seven assists during his run. Fellow forward Erik Cole scored for the fourth time in three games.
While the Canadiens have picked up seven of a possible eight points over their last four contests, they still remain 11 behind Washington for the eighth and final playoff berth.
"We had so many things happen to us this year," center David Desharnais, who scored Wednesday for his 11 point in eight games, told the team's official website. "We're trying to go out there and have fun but we continue to work really hard."
The Canadiens were without defenseman Alexei Emelin (upper body) and center Scott Gomez (concussion) on Wednesday. Defenseman Tomas Kaberle also didn't play because his girlfriend gave birth. Emelin and Gomez are both uncertain to be available Friday while Kaberle could return.
It's unknown if forwards Bobby Butler, Zenon Konopka and defenseman Matt Carkner will be available for Ottawa after they were held out Wednesday.
The Canadiens and Senators conclude their season series March 23 in Montreal.
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Erik Cole scored a goal on Wednesday night for the Ottowa Senators and couldn’t find any of his teammates to celebrate with. So what did Cole do? He found an outstretched arm of an 18-year veteran official Greg Kimmerly and gave him a high five. Pretty hilarious and you can only imagine what the ref was thinking after it happened.
“He was the only one there, and I had...
Ottawa Senators goaltender Craig Anderson went through his first practice Thursday since slicing his finger three weeks ago.
Anderson has been sidelined since he cut a tendon in his pinky while cooking dinner at his home on Feb. 22.
The 30-year-old Anderson told the Ottawa Citizen that he will need a few more practices to get his timing back.
He owns a 29-19-6 record and 2.85...
I can confidently say that I’ve never seen this happen before, but it was certainly entertaining. In the Canadiens/Senators game tonight, Erik Cole scored the first goal of the game on Sens backup goalie Ben Bishop and then proceeded to high-five referee Greg Kimmerly. It didn’t seem like Kimmerly was exactly planning for the high-five, more like signaling that it was a good...
Filip Kuba scored 3:07 into overtime Friday night as the Ottawa Senators moved into first place in the Northeast Division with a 2-1 victory over the Montreal Canadiens.
After taking a pass from Daniel Alfredsson, Kuba beat Carey Price with a slap shot from the top of the left faceoff circle. Erik Karlsson assisted on Kuba's winner, giving him four points in his last three games...
Defenseman Filip Kuba scored 3:07 into overtime as host Ottawa moved
into first place in the Northeast Division by topping Montreal 2-1 in overtime Friday.
Colin Greening also scored and Ben Bishop turned aside 13 shots for
the Senators, who improved to 3-0-2 in their last five games and ended
the Boston Bruins' 107-day reign atop the division.
In overtime, Kuba'...
David Desharnais scored in regulation and in a shootout, lifting the Montreal Canadiens to a 3-2 win over the Ottawa Senators on Wednesday night.
Desharnais had the only goal in the shootout, and Canadiens goalie Carey Price stopped all three Ottawa attempts.
Erik Cole also scored for Montreal (28-32-11), 3-0-1 in its last four games. The Canadiens are 3-0-1 against the Senators...
Erik Cole is one of the fastest skaters in the NHL and he showed off that speed on Wednesday as he flew down the ice to bang a goal home. He was so fast down the ice there wasn't anyone there to celebrate his goal with right away so he did the next best thing: high-five the ref.
I love it!
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In what should go down as the worst game of professional hockey ever played(alright: half-kidding), the Ottawa Senators emerged victorious 2-1 in overtime, courtesy of a Filip Kuba rocket past Montreal net-minder Carey Price in the waning moments of extra-time.
Although a close-scoring affair between divisional rivals...
A few days after signing NCAA unrestricted free agent forward Cole Schneider, the Ottawa Senators have been linked to yet another unsigned collegiate player. This time, it's Western Michigan defenceman Danny DeKeyser. From the Team 1200's Shawn Simpson (@ssimpsonhockey):
Danny Dekeyser from Western Michigan is the top College UFA. 25 teams chasing the D man. Ottawa in the...
For the first time since November, the Bruins will wake up Saturday morning looking up at another team in the Northeast Division standings. The Ottawa Senators took over the division lead when Filip Kuba scored 3:07 into overtime to beat Montreal Friday night. The Senators now have 84 points with a 37-25-10 record, one more than the Bruins (40-27-3, 83 points). The Bruins fall all...
The Bruins haven't been playing well lately, but they've still been able to hold onto an increasingly slim lead in the Northeast Division. However, the Ottawa Senators are charging hard and playing with plenty of confidence down the stretch. At this time, the Bruins aren't in any real danger of missing the playoffs, but should Ottawa pass them for the divisional lead...
I don't know if this is common practice in Montreal, but it happened Wednesday night with Erik Cole and this lucky official. I have to assume it is though, as it is on video, and BMR French Canadian expert Loser Domi is on vacation