Sens @ Rangers - Game #4 Previewby Craig Medaglia @craigmedaglia / Ottawa Senators
The Sens look to bounce back from their loss in New York on Tuesday when they take on the Rangers in Game #4 at Madison Square Garden tonight.
Sens head coach Guy Boucher may look to inject some familiar faces back into the line-up tonight after dropping Game #3 as both Chris Wideman and Tom Pyatt have been waiting patiently on the sideline for their chance to contribute.
"I was looking to put Wideman in at some point but we were winning games and it was hard to get him back in," Boucher told the media in New York yesterday. "So I'm definitely looking at doing that tomorrow regardless of injuries and Pyatt also. I was looking to bring him in last game but I didn't want to touch our line-up because it had won."
"Two regular guys that have been really good for us all year, they'll be back in and who they're taking out is going to depend on the injuries."
Video: May 3: Off-day Media - Guy Boucher
Speaking of injuries, both Zack Smith and Bobby Ryan left Tuesday's game and didn't return and the coach classified them as "day-to-day" but said he expects Ryan to play in Game #4. He also didn't rule out the possibility of going with 11 forwards and 7 defencemen tonight, something the Senators' coach has deployed on a handful of occasions this season.
The Sens are schedule for a morning skate at Madison Square Garden at 11:30 a.m. this morning and the coach will provide line-up updates afterward.
Let's get through this one quickly because it was not the Sens best effort in Game #3. The Rangers came out flying and kept that pace for the first two periods before the Sens finally got on the board late in the second period when Bobby Ryan sent a no look pass from behind the net to the red hot Jean-Gabriel Pageau who scored his 5th goal in the last two games. Ultimately, the Sens would drop Game #3 by a 4-1 final.
Besides the score (which let's not kid ourselves...kind of counts the most), the final numbers from the game appeared relatively even. Shots, attempts, face-off, hits, penalty kill...were all very close at the final buzzer so it appears the Rangers' fast start combined with a taking advantage of a few mistakes on the Sens part were probably the difference on Tuesday.
It's not required today but if you'd like to revisit Game #3, here are the full highlights...
Video: OTT Recap: Pageau scores in Game 3 loss to Rangers
Sens to watch
I mentioned Pageau's hot streak above and that's probably the biggest story for the Sens at the moment but I figured this would be a good spot to remind everyone how good Bobby Ryan has been in these playoffs. His assist in Game #3 brings his post-season totals up to 8 points (4G + 4A) in 9 games which sets a new career high in playoff points for him (Ryan previously had 7 points in 13 games back in 2009). As mentioned above, he left Tuesday's game after being struck with an Erik Karlsson point shot but all signs point to him playing tonight.
Video: OTT@NYR, Gm3: Pageau buries Ryan's no-look dish
Catch all the action on CBC and TVAS tonight starting at 7:30 p.m. and if you are looking for a great spot to watch the game with other rabid Sens fans check out our list of official Sens Army Headquarters for the playoffs here.