GAME DAY PREVIEW: SENATORS VERSUS OILERS
The Series So Far
Senators and Edmonton Oilers face off in a Valentine’s Day matinee to conclude their two-game season series. On Nov. 13 in Edmonton, the Senators jumped to a 3-0 lead but allowed the Oilers to force overtime. Ottawa won 4-3 when Mike Hoffman’s shot from the high slot squeaked through netminder Ben Scrivens. The Oilers come in to Ottawa having just beaten Montreal. This is the fifth of a six-game road trip. Edmonton, which came into the week 29th in the NHL standings and eight points back of 28th, has all but locked the right to, yet again, select one of the very best the draft has to offer. In the past five drafts, beginning in 2010, the Oilers have drafted first, first, first, seventh and third.
Players to watch
Nail Yakupov, Oilers: After coming to Edmonton, Rockland, Ont, s Derek Roy has reportedly become a mentor for the 21-year-old Yakupov, his new linemate. The No. 1 overall pick in 2012 could use the help. Entering the week, he had five goals in 53 games,
one in the past 26 and none in the past 11.
Jordan Eberle, Oilers: Edmonton’s talented big three — Eberle, Taylor Hall and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins — had a combined 38 goals entering the week, led by Eberle’s 15. Ottawa rookies Mike Hoffman and Mark Stone, along with defenceman Erik Karlsson, had 41.
Chris Neil, Senators: Are we watching the 35-year-old Neil’s last days as a Senator? The March 2 trade deadline is fast approaching, and, entering the week, the rugged winger had averaged about eight minutes of ice time in his past five games.
Rob Klinkhammer, who played 15 games for the Senators in 2011-12, is on his third team this season, having played 19 games in Arizona and 10 in Pittsburgh before being dealt to Edmonton. Alfred native Benoit Pouliot is now on his sixth NHL team. Roy is playing for his sixth team in four seasons. TV: 2 p.m. Saturday, CBC, TVA, SN
Radio: TSN 1200