GAME: Ottawa Senators (22-11-5-3) at Carolina Hurricanes (14-18-8-2).TIME: Sunday, 5 p.m. EST.
The Ottawa Senators, coming off their first loss in almost a month, try to extend their unbeaten streak against the Carolina Hurricanes to 10 when the teams meet for the second time this season.
Ottawa has been the league's hottest team during the past month, going 9-0-2 and winning six straight before both streaks ended Friday with a 3-2 loss at Buffalo.
The loss, which prevented the Senators from matching a team-record 12-game unbeaten streak, came down to Buffalo's power play outperforming Ottawa's. Facing the NHL's 26th-ranked power play, the Senators gave up all three goals while shorthanded.
"It had to come to an end eventually," Ottawa's Jason Spezza said. "Unfortunately it was tonight."
One streak that the Senators kept intact was holding opponents to three goals or fewer for the 22nd consecutive game, the longest such streak in the league this season.
A matchup with the Hurricanes figures to be the perfect opportunity for Ottawa to get right back into the win column.
The Senators, 7-0-2 in the last nine meetings with Carolina, have scored 25 goals in their last five games against the Hurricanes.
Carolina has shown improvement since Peter Laviolette replaced Paul Maurice as coach Dec. 18, going 6-6 to get back in the Eastern Conference playoff race.
A 4-1 loss at Washington on Friday kept the Hurricanes from their first three-game win streak of the season.
The Capitals converted two of their seven power-play chances, while Carolina was 1-for-8.
"Before the game, we said that the only thing that had a chance tonight was their power play," Laviolette said. "And in the end, it did us in."
If the Hurricanes are to compete for a playoff spot, they are going to need production from Jeff O'Neill. The right wing, a three-time 30-goal scorer, got just his fifth goal in 42 games this season Friday.
"I've taken about 120 shots better than that one that went in," said O'Neill, who moved into a tie with Pat Verbeek for third on the franchise all-time scoring list. "I guess that's the way it goes."