Florida: 30-22-12 (72PTS)
Ottawa: 34-24-8 (76PTS)
Season Series: 0-2-1
Game Time: 6:00 PM EST
Television: Fox Sports Florida, SportsNet
Radio: 560 WQAM
The Florida Panthers let two points slip away once again Saturday, this time at the hands of Nashville. The Washington Capitals - 5-0 losers to New Jersey on Friday - are three points behind the Cats in the Southeast Division; they play the Flyers tonight. It's not a "must win" for the Panthers yet, but they would do well to win their first game against the Senators (7-2-1, 3 shutouts in last ten) this season to ensure a continued divisional lead for another couple of days.
Ottawa has won nine straight over Florida since 2009-10, with icon Daniel Alfredsson bagging the Cats for 57 points (26G) in 54 career games; he has 8 goals and 10 assists in 20 appearances at Miami Arena & BankAtlantic Center.
News and Notes
The Senators beat up on the Panthers in Sunrise in mid-February, winning 6-2. Ottawa has outscored Florida 14-8 in three games.
The Panthers, missing injured leading scorer Kris Versteeg, couldn't solve Pekka Rinne and lost to the visiting Nashville Predators 3-1 yesterday.
D Ed Jovanovski should return tonight, having yesterday off for "maintenance." However, Tyson Strachan could replace another player tonight, possibly Keaton Ellerby.
- F Scottie Upshall (core), 2/1, 6 to 8 weeks
- D Dmitry Kulikov (knee), 1/21, 6 to 8 weeks
- F Matt Bradley (concussion), 2/19, indefinitely
- F Kris Versteeg (lower body)
- F John Madden (healthy)
- F Marco Sturm (healthy)
- D Strachan/Ellerby (healthy)
Former Panthers goaltender Craig Anderson is out with an injury (finger). Jose Theodore is expected to face off against recent call-up Robin Lehner, who is 3-1 (1 SO) in four games with the Sens in 2011-12. He's never played Florida.