The Colorado Avalanche return home tonight for their first game at the Pepsi Center in more than three weeks. After finishing their eastern road trip on a four game win streak, the Avs have now won seven of their last eight games.
The Avalanche are playing some of their best hockey of the season and a win tonight could pull them within a point of the St. Louis Blues for first place in the Western Conference.
This is the second meeting between these two teams in the last week. The Avalanche left Ottawa with a 4-1 victory last Thursday.
The Avs got some bad news this morning as coach Jared Bednar confirmed that Nazem Kadri would be missing from the team “indefinitely” after he sustained a lower body injury in Minnesota last Sunday. The coach mentioned that Kadri will be out “weeks” so for now, the team is going to need someone to step up in a big way.
For tonight, J.T. Compher is going to be inserted into 2C spot. He has only one goal in his last ten games but being moved up in the lineup could help spark some more offense. Vladislav Kamenev will draw into the lineup for the first time since January 20th.
Gabriel Landeskog - Nathan MacKinnon - Mikko Rantanen
Valeri Nichushkin - J.T. Compher - Andre Burakovsky
Matt Calvert - Pierre-Eduoard Bellemare - Joonas Donskoi
Tyson Jost - Vladislav Kamenev - Matt Nieto
Ryan Graves - Cale Makar
Samuel Girard - Erik Johnson
Ian Cole - Nikita Zadorov
The Senators have lost five games in a row and right now they are playing for little more than a showcase of their players before the trade deadline.
They have only six wins on the road this season and are coming into this game with the second fewest goals scored in the Eastern Conference. They are the type of team the Avalanche absolutely have to beat at this time of year. That said, they’re also exactly the kind of matchup that could lead to a trap game.
Brady Tkachuk - J-G Pageau - Connor Brown
Vlad Namestnikov - Chris Tierney - Anthony Duclair
Tyler Ennis - Artem Anisimov - Drake Batherson
Filip Chlapik - Colin White - Scott Sabourin
Thomas Chabot - Ron Hainsey
Mark Borowiecki - Dylan Demelo
Mike Reilly - Nikita Zaitsev
Philipp Grubauer is confirmed to be back in net for the Avs after he was given a night off against the Wild. Opposite him, we are expected to see Craig Anderson for the Sens