The Sens and Predators are set to square off on Country Night at Canadian Tire Centre and we've got all the latest news and notes on the projected line-up, starting goalie and more...
Sens head coach D.J. Smith met with the media this morning following the team's skate and shared that he'll roll with the same line-up as Tuesday's game in Tampa. The Sens had a good bounce back game against the Lightning and battled back from a two-goal deficit to force overtime before ultimately dropping a 4-3 decision in OT.
Smith also provided a few injury updates as well and it appears that Scott Sabourin is nearing a return to action in the near future. Sabourin hasn't played since leaving the team's Nov. 2nd game in Boston after a massive collision in the neutral zone but has recently resumed skating with the team in a regular contact jersey, the first sign he could be back in the line-up sooner than later.
"He's close," said Smith about Sabourin's recovery. "We'll get him some contact today and some contact tomorrow and then we'll make a decision on if we can get him in before Christmas or not."
On the back end, Nikita Zaitsev is likely out of action until the calendar flips to 2020 after suffering an injury blocking a shot against the Blue Jackets last weekend. Smith shared that the Sens will use their 6 healthy defencemen tonight but a recall could be made at some point this week to add some depth with Belleville just down the road.
"It's tough to say...it could be 2-4 weeks," the coach said about Zaitsev's recovery timeline. "We're not going to put him in a spot where he can't come back and be effective so we'd like it to be the shorter route but in saying that, you never know how guys feel or their status when they start to skate. We'll know a little bit more after two weeks probably."
Video: OTT vs. NSH | Coach Pre-game Media
Here's look at the Sens' projected forward lines and defence pairings for tonight:
Tkachuk - Pageau - C. Brown
Namestnikov - Anisimov - Ennis
Paul - Tierney - Duclair
L. Brown - Beaudin - White
Chabot - Hainsey
Borowiecki - Brannstrom
Englund - Goloubef
After a rough outing in Sunrise on Monday, Anders Nilsson (9-9-2) is back between the pipes for the Senators tonight. Nilsson was beaten six times against the Panthers but prior to that 6-1 defeat Nilsson had put together a good stretch of games and was 2-0-1 in his previous three starts.
With Craig Anderson still on the shelf with a lower body injury, Marcus Hogberg draws the back-up duty.
UPDATE (4:15 p.m.): It appears that Nilsson is under the weather and won't be active tonight which means Hogberg now gets the start and Filip Gustavsson has been recalled from Belleville to back-up.
Lots of cool stuff planned for our second annual Country Night presented by Pure Country 94 including a live performance by Canadian Country band The Reklaws. We'll also be throwing a pre-game tailgate party in the Molson Fan Deck and the first 5,000 fans through the gates will receive Sens + Pure Country 94 branded bandanas!
Dust off your nicest belt buckle because tonight's going to be a great time.
Video: Plus-Minus with Mark Borowiecki | Country
These two teams last met exactly one year and two days ago at Canadian Tire Centre where the Sens secured a 4-3 victory in overtime thanks to a lovely little effort from Thomas Chabot. Ottawa saw a 3-0 first period lead disappear over the final 40 minutes before Chabot ended the extra frame just 21 seconds in.
Full highlights from that game below:
Video: Condensed Game: Predators @ Senators
Where to watch
It's a 7:30 p.m. start at Canadian Tire Centre and here's all the ways you can catch the Sens and Predators tonight...
BROADCAST: TSN5, RDS2
RADIO: TSN 1200, 94,5 Unique FM
Need a spot to catch tonight's game? Be sure to check out our Molson Canadian Watch Party at Jolly Taxpayer (3050 Woodroffe Ave.) where they'll be contests, prizes and 20 oz drafts of Molson Canadian for just $5.50 (plus tax).
To find out where our next watch party will be and specials you can enjoy, visit the full schedule click here.