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Sens @ Penguins - Game #2 Preview

by Craig Medaglia @craigmedaglia / Ottawa Senators

The Sens have an opportunity to take a 2-0 lead in their Eastern Conference Final series against the Penguins tonight at 8 p.m. in Pittsburgh.

The Sens once again opted not to practice yesterday and have no plans to skate this morning prior to the game. This trend is something Boucher has implemented at times this year in order to allow his team to be as fresh as possible come game time and in the wake of strong performances.

"It's hard to keep those guys in check but I thought at 5-on-5 we played well," said Boucher during his media availability on Sunday. "We outshot them even though they had a lot of power plays so I have to give credit to our guys. At 5-on-5, I think we doubled them in shots and we gave ourselves enough scoring chances to create offence."

"We tried to limit them but the reality is that you're not going to limit those guys to nothing."

Some line-up news to pass your way as Sens head coach Guy Boucher told the media yesterday that Viktor Stalberg would skate on his own and could be available for tonight's contest. Stalberg was absent from Game 1 and is currently listed as day-to-day but a return to active duty could be near for the Swede.

There was also a positive update on injured defenceman Mark Borowiecki who was knocked out of the line-up in Game 2 of the Sens' first round series against the Bruins. When asked about Borowiecki's recovery during his media scrum yesterday the coach said: "It's moving along. Right now, the information that I'm getting is that he could be back in this series."

Video: May 14: Boucher Off-day Media

 

Previous game

The 1-3-1 was on display in Game 1 and the Senators turned in a masterful road performance on Saturday night limiting the high-scoring Penguins to just a lone goal. Bobby Ryan (more on him in a second) lead the way offensively for the Sens setting up the game's opening goal with a beautiful no look pass to Jean-Gabriel Pageau and ultimately ending the game with a strong, power move to his backhand in overtime. Craig Anderson was also dialed in for Game 1 and although he surrendered a late 3rd period goal that eventually forced extra time, he was able to turn aside 27 of Pittsburgh's 28 shots including a pair in OT.

"When a period ends, all the momentum that was gained or lost starts at zero again," Anderson said during his post-Game 1 availability. "You're able to come out to a fresh start. That's the main message that I tell myself; it's a fresh start, a 0-0 game and I need to make the next save."

You've probably already seen them a few times but check out the highlights again from Game 1 below...

Video: Ryan's OT goal lifts Sens to Game 1 victory vs. Pens

 

Sens to watch

We briefly mentioned Bobby Ryan's contributions to Saturday's win above but he's been a factor all post-season for the Senators. His 11 points (5G + 6A) in 13 games is tops among Sens forwards and he's currently tied for the lead in playoff game-winning goals (with Jaden Schwartz and Jake Guentzel) with 3. With his overtime marker in Game 1, Ryan became the first Senator in franchise history to record 2 overtime winning goals in the same post-season.

Video: OTT@PIT, Gm1: Ryan roofs game-winning goal in OT

 

Kyle Turris was an absolute beast in the face-off circle during the opening game of the Eastern Conference Final clicking at a 60.0% success rate against two of the league's best centres (Crosby finished the game at 38.7% and Malkin at 43.8%). We spoke with Turris back in March (ironically before hosting the Penguins) and here's what he had to say about gamesmanship in the face-off circle...

It's a fun part of the game that doesn't get very much attention but it's a really big part of the game. It's the "game within the game" that you take seriously but you can also interact with the centremen on the other team in a serious and joking way. You're always trying to hide what you're going to do. Sometimes you go in and you know what each other is going to do and you just trying to beat what he's going to do or vice versa. I really enjoy it, it's a fun part of the game.

 

Broadcast

Friendly reminder that it's an 8 p.m. start time tonight in Pittsburgh and you can catch the game on CBC and TVAS. Theres also always a seat for you at on of our many official Sens Army Headquarters for the playoffs and you can find them all here.

Tweet from @SensHouseOttawa: Woo hoo! 1 down 3 to go! #ALLIN pic.twitter.com/9P3MDihdRV

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