Series (Game 6 of 6)

Boston leads 4-2

Game 1: Saturday, October 24th
Game 2: Saturday, November 28th
Game 3: Monday, December 21st
Game 4: Tuesday, January 5th
Game 5: Monday, January 18th
Game 6: Saturday, January 23rd

Senators 2

(28-21-4, 60 pts)

Bruins 1

(23-19-8, 54 pts)

Coverage: CBC

1:00 PM ET, January 23, 2010

TD Garden, Boston, Massachusetts

1 2 3 T
OTT 1 1 02
BOS 0 1 01

D. Alfredsson (Senators - RW): Goals: 1, Assists: 0

D. Paille (Bruins - LW): Goals: 1, Assists: 0

E. Karlsson (Senators - D): Goals: 0, Assists: 0

Senators-Bruins Preview


The banged-up Boston Bruins are slipping down the standings and in danger of falling out of the playoff picture just one season after they were the Eastern Conference's top seed.

The Ottawa Senators have already taken advantage once this week.

The surging Senators will try for their second win in Boston in six days as they look to extend their longest winning streak of the season to six in Saturday's matinee.

Ottawa also visited the TD Garden for an afternoon affair Monday, getting a hat trick from Daniel Alfredsson and chasing Boston's Tim Thomas from the Bruins' 5-1 loss to end Thomas' 11-start winning streak against the Senators.

The result reflected the recent trend of each team, with the Senators (27-21-4) having jumped past the Bruins in the standings during their five-game winning streak.

Ottawa has allowed a total of six goals during the streak, with Brian Elliott compiling a 1.34 goals-against average while starting the last three games. Elliott made 27 saves in a 3-2 win over St. Louis on Thursday night, extending a run that has been especially fulfilling considering the Senators had lost their previous five games.

"We were on the other end of a bad streak there so it's nice to turn it around, but to turn it around with consistency," defenseman Chris Phillips said. "We have the right consistency right now and we just want to keep that going."

The return of Alfredsson has certainly helped, with the captain totaling four goals and four assists in four games since an 11-game absence due to a shoulder injury. Center Peter Regin has also emerged with two goals and three assists in the last two games, including three power-play points against the Blues.

"Everybody wants to score, obviously, especially when you help the team win," Regin said. "It's way more fun when you're winning five games in a row rather than losing five in a row."

The Senators still have the league's worst power play (15.4 percent), but they were 3 of 4 with the man advantage Thursday. Ottawa has not allowed a power-play goal during the winning streak, killing all 18 of its opponents' opportunities.

The Bruins (23-18-8) went 0 for 2 on Monday while falling behind 4-0 by the end of the second period. They had won four straight and 11 of 12 against Ottawa coming in, but Boston has been struggling regardless of its opponent lately.

The club fell to 1-5-1 in its last seven games and dropped its fourth straight in regulation at home on Thursday with a 3-2 loss to Columbus. Last season, the Bruins were 29-6-6 at home.

Despite a lengthy injured list headlined by forwards Marc Savard and Marco Sturm, they outshot Columbus 34-25 and led 2-1 entering the third period. But the Bruins "tightened up" after the Blue Jackets tied the game, according to Boston coach Claude Julien.

"You don't want to see that," Julien said. "But that's where we're at right now. When you haven't won on a consistent basis, that's a normal tendency."

Goals have been a major problem as the Bruins rank last in the NHL with 2.43 goals per game. Even the team's normally reliable defense has allowed 24 goals in the last seven games as Boston has slipped into a tie with the New York Islanders for seventh place in the East.

Five other teams trail by four or fewer points in the crowded postseason chase.

"We've just got to do a better job of bearing down and having that killer instinct," Bruins wing Milan Lucic said.