SENATORS (16-20-6) at BRUINS (22-12-7)
TV: SNET-E (HD), NESN (HD)
Last 10: Ottawa 3-4-3; Boston 5-2-3
Season series: Third of six meetings this season between these Northeast Division rivals. Each team has a shutout victory on its opponent's home ice. Bruins goalie Tim Thomas made 29 saves in a 4-0 win in Ottawa on Oct. 30, and Senators goalie Brian Elliott responded with 31 stops in a 2-0 win in Boston on Nov. 13.
Big story: The Bruins regained sole possession of first place in the division Monday night in rather dramatic fashion. Shut out for more than 56 minutes in Pittsburgh and trailing by a pair of goals, Boston scored twice in 12 seconds to tie the game, then got Mark Recchi's power-play goal and an empty-netter in the last minute for a 4-2 victory. Thomas even had the night off, so the Senators should plan on seeing him in net Tuesday.
Senators: Now that Ottawa's deficit in the playoff race has reached double digits -- the Senators began play Tuesday 11 points behind the Canadiens for eighth in the Eastern Conference -- there isn't any time to waste as far as putting together a winning streak. A 2-1 loss to the Lightning on Saturday dropped the Senators to 0-3-2 in their last five, with just seven goals scored during that span.
"We're trying to stay in the present here," captain Daniel Alfredsson said. "We feel like we still have a chance and that's what we're working toward ... We can only look forward. We can't change what's done. We can control our work ethic in practice and in games. That's what we're going to have to have, especially now that we're missing some offensive players."
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|Jan. 11: Erik Karlsson All Star Reaction - Tue, 11 Jan 2011|
|Jan. 11: Gord Wilson's Game Preview - Mon, 10 Jan 2011|
|Jan. 11: Matt Carkner Pre-game - Mon, 10 Jan 2011|
|Jan. 11: Daniel Alfredsson Pre-game - Mon, 10 Jan 2011|
|Jan. 11: Cory Clouston Pre-game - Mon, 10 Jan 2011|
|Jan. 10: Cory Clouston - Mon, 10 Jan 2011|
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Injury report: Ottawa goalie Pascal Leclaire (lower body) and forward Jason Spezza (shoulder) remain out indefinitely, while forward Alex Kovalev is expected to miss at least the next week with a knee injury and forward Mike Fisher is day-to-day with a lower-body injury ... Boston defenceman Adam McQuaid and forward Nathan Horton were out of the lineup Monday for undisclosed reasons, while defenceman Mark Stuart (broken finger) is on injured reserve.
Stat pack: Second-year defenceman Erik Karlsson leads the Senators with 17 assists and his 25 points are one behind Alfredsson for first in overall scoring ... Chara was a plus-1 on Monday and tied Horton for the Bruins' lead with a plus-15 for the season.
Puck drop: Thomas and his NHL-leading 1.84 goals-against average, .944 save percentage and five shutouts (tied with Henrik Lundqvist and Tomas Vokoun) will be awaiting Ottawa on Tuesday. It may take another flawless effort by Elliott in order to swipe two points away from the home team in this one.