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Game Day Notes: Game #20 - Sens @ Sabres

by Craig Medaglia @craigmedaglia / Ottawa Senators

Get ready for tonight's 7 p.m. start in Buffalo with a look at the Sens' projected line-up, starting goaltender and more...

Projected line-up

Sens head coach D.J. Smith met with the media late this afternoon in Buffalo and shared that he'll roll with the same line-up that took down the Flyers last night in Ottawa. The Sens started a little slow against Philadelphia but came together down the stretch to earn a hard-fought 2-1 decision and Smith is looking to build off that tonight.

"We were focused, stayed above them and tried to limit them," he said about his team's second half last night. "If you play wide open against a team that has as much skill as they do, especially their top guys, you're not going to have great success."

Smith also provided a quick injury update on Scott Sabourin who has been sidelined since November 2nd after suffering a fractured nose against the Bruins.

"He's doing a lot better," said the coach. "He worked out a little bit last week but we're not going to push him. I don't want to ask him every day how he's feeling. I've been through that scenario so we're going to let him heal on his own time but we're hopeful that he's getting better."

With no morning skate today, here's a look at the Sens projected line-up tonight against the Sabres:

Tkachuk - L. Brown - Duclair

Paul - Pageau - C. Brown

Namestnikov - White - Ennis

Chlapik - Tierney - Ryan

 

Chabot - Zaitsev

Borowiecki - Demelo

Brannstrom - Hainsey

 

In goal

Craig Anderson (3-6-0) gets the call in goal tonight for the Senators and looks to earn consecutive wins for the first time this season. Anderson was excellent in his most recent start making 23 saves against the Devils on Wednesday night to pick up the 4-2 decision.

"It's a back-to-back and I think we've got two good goalies," said Smith about the decision to split the starts this weekend. "I think it just makes sense to have the fresh guy go."

Video: OTT@NJD: Anderson uses pad to deny Hughes

 

Vladdy fitting in

Since joining the Sens via a trade with the New York Rangers, Vladislav Namestnikov has acclimatized himself well with his new club. In 17 games with the Senators this season, Namestnikov has 6 goals and 5 assists and his superb skating has been a real asset to an Ottawa team looking to play with higher pace.

"I think my speed has always been my biggest strength," said Namestnikov. "We've got a young team here so we naturally play a high-energy game anyways and as guys get more comfortable with each other, it just helps to build everyone's confidence."

Video: CAR@OTT: Namestnikov redirects Ennis' shot by Reimer

Namestnikov has carved out a nice role for himself on special teams as well and has averaged over two and a half minutes on both the power play and penalty kill per game since being acquired. November could offer even more opportunities for ice-time as it's one of the team's busier months. The Sens have a total of 16 games in November (11 on the road) and Namestnikov and his teammates are doing what they can to endure the grind.

"Eat, sleep and rest," joked Namestnikov about his approach to this busy stretch of games. "There's really not much you can do besides taking care of your body but this is something that every team goes through. It's all about being prepared and that includes eating right and sleeping a lot."

 

Where to watch

It's a 7 p.m. start in Buffalo tonight and here's how you can watch all the action between the Sens and Sabres...

BROADCAST: Sportsnet ONE, TVAS

RADIO: TSN 120094,5 Unique FM

In need of a spot to catch tonight's game? Well if you want to make it it more lively, why not grab a crew and head to any of the Royal Oak's in the city and you can find Molson Canadian and half priced wings on all Senators game days.

Tweet from @Senators: It���s a #Sens game day!The Sens head back on the road for another 3-game road trip starting tonight in Buffalo. Puck drops against the Sabres at 7 p.m. EST. #GoSensGo pic.twitter.com/8NHYIaYiJG

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