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Preview: Senators at Blue Jackets

Columbus defenseman Zach Werenski ill, may miss first game of season; Senators lineup in question

by Craig Merz / Correspondent

SENATORS (23-15-4) at BLUE JACKETS (30-9-4)

7 p.m. ET; FS-O, TSN5, RDS, NHL.TV


Senators team scope

The Ottawa Senators could have changes in their lineup because of illness and coach Guy Boucher said call-ups from Binghamton of the American Hockey League may be needed. "I can't tell you the number because we're not really sure," he said. "We're aware we can't have too many of those sick guys show up this afternoon. Right now, we seem to be on the borderline of everything seems to be OK. Hopefully, the guys won't be sick tonight and be sick tomorrow on the day off." Defenseman Fredrik Claesson, a scratch in nine of the past 10 games, will play, likely meaning a defenseman is sick. "Right now it's always better to have adversity after you get a good win," Boucher said. Goaltender Mike Condon, who has started each of the past 10 games and played in 20 straight since Dec. 1, will start. Ottawa has 17 goals in the past four games. "We've won three of the last four games," Boucher said. "We've had a good stretch. We want to keep the good stretch going."


Blue Jackets team scope

Columbus Blue Jackets rookie defenseman Zach Werenski, who hasn't missed a game this season, may not play because of illness. He did not practice Wednesday and the Blue Jackets did not hold a morning skate. Defenseman Markus Nutivaara, who missed a 4-1 win against the Carolina Hurricanes on Tuesday because of an undisclosed injury could be back in the lineup. Scott Harrington replaced Nutivaara and played his fourth game of the season, and first since Nov. 20. Dalton Prout would draw into the lineup if Werenski and Nutivaara each can't play. The Blue Jackets are 3-4-0 since a 16-game winning streak but Tortorella liked the way they responded Tuesday after trailing in the first period by scoring two quick goals. "I definitely believe we're a much better team in handling those types of momentums coming at you during a game," Tortorella said. "Last year maybe we don't score those two and they score at the beginning of the second period and we're down 2-0."


Senators projected lineup

Ryan Dzingel -- Kyle Turris -- Bobby Ryan

Zack Smith -- Derick Brassard -- Mark Stone

Mike Hoffman -- Jean-Gabriel Pageau -- Tom Pyatt

Chris Kelly -- Curtis Lazar -- Chris Neil

Marc Methot -- Erik Karlsson

Dion Phaneuf -- Cody Ceci

Fredrik Claesson -- Chris Wideman

Mike Condon

Chris Driedger

Scratched: None

Injured: Andrew Hammond (ankle), Clarke MacArthur (concussion), Mark Borowiecki (illness)

Personal leave: Craig Anderson


Blue Jackets projected lineup

Brandon Saad -- Alexander Wennberg -- Cam Atkinson

Scott Hartnell -- Brandon Dubinsky -- Nick Foligno

Boone Jenner -- William Karlsson -- Josh Anderson

Matt Calvert -- Lukas Sedlak -- Sam Gagner

Zach Werenski -- Seth Jones

Jack Johnson -- David Savard

Scott Harrington -- Ryan Murray

Sergei Bobrovsky

Joonas Korpisalo

Scratched: Dalton Prout

Injured: David Clarkson (back), Markus Nutivaara (undisclosed)


Status report

Bobrovsky is expected to make his second straight start since missing three games because of illness.


Who's hot

Hoffman has four goals and two assists in four-game point streak. … Stone has four goals in four games. …Turris has two goals and four assists in a four-game point streak. ... Smith has five goals and six assists in his past 10 games. … Karlsson has four assists in three games. … Jenner has a goal in each of the past three games and has five points in the past four. ... Dubinsky has two goals and an assist in two games. … Atkinson has 22 points (13 goals, nine assists) in his past 20 games.

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