What about this?
Since the lockout ended, Ottawa's apparently ran roughshod over the Sabres to a record of 20-6-4, that includes 5 wins last season. (Ed. note: Thanks for doing the research Wayne Scanlan.) A season that we can all agree sucked colossal balls.
Anyways is the norm, here's my prediction for the Ottawa Citizen's panel, if you're interested in checking out the rest of the esteemed consortium of Senators writers, follow this link. Here's what I had to say....
Senators 3, Sabres 2
People can talk all they want about how Ottawa's rivalry with Toronto has deteriorated but for me, Ottawa's rivalry with Buffalo has replaced whatever bad blood was lost with the Leafs. Between Pominville and Alfie's playoff clinchers, Emery's fights with Biron and Peters, Ruutu biting Peters' finger and then Adam Mair whining to Luke Richardson about how gutless Ottawa plays, this rivalry has reached epic proportions. Working in Ottawa's favour is that Buffalo arrives into town during a week in which they played their worst game of the season on Wednesday, a 6-2 loss to the Panthers, and they also played last night against Boston. Granted, it may not help Ottawa's cause that their lineup won't feature Donovan and Kovalev, but AK-27's detractors can rest easy knowing that after Kovie's strong performance against the Penguins, he was due to be MIA.
Okay, so granted, Ottawa will be without Donovan and Kovalev. On the surface, that's a big deal. However, via some Twitter speculation from Ian Mendes and Chris Stevenson, the consensus is tthat Patrick Lalime is likely starting for Buffalo. (Note to Senators shooters: wrist shots from the top of the left circle. Aim five-hole.) If there's anything we've come to realize with Lalime after numerous playoff lapses against Toronto. It doesn't matter if Buffalo may have the stronger lineup on paper. Lalime is the ultimate equalizer.
Here are the forward lines as provided by the official Senators Twitter:
I still find it a bit interesting that Alfredsson isn't playing with Fisher this game to balance the scoring a bit more. Especially, in Kovalev's absence. If Fisher somehow winds up with a point or two tonight, he may be for realz.
According to Puck Daddy, the 2005-06 Senators were the third best team of the decade not to win the Cup. Agree or disagree?