Game 37: Penguins Vs. Senators Preview
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OTTAWA (KDKA) – The Pittsburgh Penguins will be looking for their fourth straight win when they travel north of the border to take on the Ottawa Senators Sunday night.
Pittsburgh won the previous two meetings with the Senators 5-2 and 2-1 respectively this season.
The Penguins went into the brief Christmas break on a good note after dispatching the Washington Capitals 3-2 in a shootout on the road.
Sidney Crosby extended his point streak to 23 games with a goal and an assist in the game. During the streak, he has 23 goals and 22 assists.
Marc-Andre Fleury (16-7-1, 2.28 GAA, .918 save percentage, one shutout) made 32 saves and improved to 15-1-1 over his last 17 starts.
With the win, the Penguins moved into first place in the Atlantic Division and became the first team in the NHL to reach the 50-point mark. The Philadelphia Flyers are one point behind and have played one less game.
The Senators (15-17-4 – 34 points) are currently third in the Northeast Division and 10th in the Eastern Conference.
Ottawa is 4-3-3 in their last 10 games, but did earn a 2-1 victory over the Nashville Predators on Thursday.
Offensively, the Senators have struggled to light the lamp this season. Their 83 goals rank 12th in the conference. Only the Toronto Maple Leafs, New York Islanders and New Jersey Devils have scored fewer goals.
Defensively, things haven’t been much better as the Senators are 23rd in the league in goals allowed per game (2.94).
Daniel Alfredsson leads the Senators in points (22) and goals (11) in 36 games.
Brian Elliott (11-10-3, 2.98 GAA, .904 save percentage, three shutouts) is expected to be in goal for Ottawa tonight.
Ottawa’s other goaltender, Pascal Leclaire, is dealing with a lower-body injury.
Elliott is 2-1 with a 3.76 GAA and .884 save percentage against the Penguins in his career.
For Pittsburgh, Evgeni Malkin is also heating up since returning to the lineup after dealing with a knee injury.
Malkin has five goals and five assists in his last five games, including a five-point effort against the Phoenix Coyotes.
Fleury is expected to be back in net for the Penguins and holds a 6-7-1 record with a 3.67 GAA and .895 save percentage against Ottawa.
The puck is set to drop at 7:30 p.m. and can be seen on FSN Pittsburgh.