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Devils welcome in Senators for matinee

by Mike G. Morreale

SENATORS (7-6-2) at DEVILS (9-3-3)


Last 10: Ottawa 4-5-1; New Jersey 6-3-1

Season series: The first of three meetings between the clubs, and first of two at Prudential Center. The Devils won three of four matches in 2011-12, including the series finale on April 7 when Ilya Kovalchuk scored a pair of goals and Martin Brodeur made 31 saves.

Big story: Both teams are coming off disappointing losses on Saturday. The Devils lost their second in three games, 5-1 to the New York Islanders, and the Senators dropped their second straight, 3-0 to the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Team Scope:

Senators: Despite directing 34 shots at Maple Leafs goalie Ben Scrivens, including 19 in the second period, the Senators were shut out for the third time this season on Saturday. Ottawa goalie Craig Anderson, who leads the League with a .948 save percentage, was named the second star of the game with 28 saves.

Devils: The Devils have won six of their last eight games and are 15-3-3 in their last 21 regular season contests dating back to 2011-12. Devils goalie Johan Hedberg, who took the loss Saturday against the Islanders, suffered his first regulation setback in his last 11 decisions (8-1-2). Hedberg, who made 28 saves, stopped David Ullstrom on a penalty shot in the first period. Defenseman Henrik Tallinder, who logged 16:52 of ice time and was whistled for two minor penalties, returned to the lineup for the first time since Feb. 2. He replaced Mark Fayne.

Who's hot: For the Devils, Patrik Elias has two goals and 11 points over the past seven games and Kovalchuk is on a six-game point streak (three goals, 10 points). … Through 13 starts, Anderson has stopped 379 of 400 shots in regulation and overtime for the Senators while registering two shutouts.

Injury report: The Devils are without wing Dainius Zubrus for the next 4-6 weeks after he underwent wrist surgery on Feb. 14. … For the Senators, defensemen Erik Karlsson (left Achilles) and Jared Cowen (hip), and forward Jason Spezza (back) are out. Forwards Peter Regin (chest), Guillaume Latendresse (neck) and Milan Michalek (knee) are questionable.

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