|Senators defenceman Anton Volchenkov will play his 200th NHL game tonight against the Montreal Canadiens.|
by Todd Anderson
With his team holding a one-point lead for second place in the Northeast Division over the Montreal Canadiens, Senators head coach Bryan Murray expects Canadiens head coach Guy Carbonneau will have his club ready for a solid effort tonight. The Habs will also be looking back at the 8-3 loss to Ottawa on Jan. 13 as a source of motivation going into tonight's match.
"One of the notes I made to pass on to the players is certainly exactly that," Murray said after an optional skate today in Montreal. "The last game against Toronto (4-1 loss on Saturday), and the last game against us, Guy is going to be adamant about them playing hard, playing good defence and protecting the goaltender a little better. The area that's hurt them, I think, in the last couple of games that they've lost is their special teams. I'm sure that will be addressed big time by them. We know that we're in for a game against a real hungry, desperate, angry team and we have to prepare accordingly."
The Senators will ice the same lineup used to defeat the Boston Bruins 3-1 on Saturday. Ray Emery starts in goal.
Volchenkov to play 200th game
Senators defenceman Anton Volchenkov will play his 200th NHL game tonight. While Volchenkov is two points shy of 50 for his career, the rugged defensive defenceman offers so much more than point production.
Volchenkov is currently first in the NHL with 165 blocked shots and 12th in hits with 130. Last season Volchenkov was sixth in the league with 189 blocked shots and 29th with 139 hits. Over four seasons in the league, he sports a plus-minus rating of +31 and has received 133 penalty minutes.