Back Senators as Road Dogs vs. Canadiens

Ross Benjamin

Saturday, March 15, 2014 5:52 PM GMT

Saturday, Mar. 15, 2014 5:52 PM GMT

The Canadians host the Senators at the Belle Centre in Montreal, Quebec, Canada with the opening face-off slated for 7:05 PM ET.

Ottawa Senators vs. Montreal Canadians 

There were no NHL betting odds posted at the time of this writing due to the uncertain status of Montreal goaltender Carey Price. Ottawa is 5-1 in their last 6 versus Montreal. These teams have seen 4 of their last 5 meetings in Montreal go over the total. The home team has won 11 of the last 15-games in this series. Montreal is currently 3rd in the Atlantic Division, and 4th overall in the Eastern Conference. Ottawa is 6th in the Atlantic, and 12th overall in the East.

It's Desperation Time for the Senators

Although the Senators have 4 teams they must hurdle over with just 17-games left to play in order to qualify for the playoffs, they still remain just 5-points behind both Detroit and Philadelphia for the final playoff position in the Eastern Conference. Following the game tonight, the Senators will play 10 of their final 16 regular season games at home. The Senators enter tonight having lost 5 of their last 7-games, and come off a 4-3 overtime home loss to Nashville on Monday. 

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Play on the High Side

Ottawa has gone over the total in 5 of their last 7 overall, and has seen just 7 of their last 26-games versus Atlantic Division opponents stay under the total. They've allowed opponents to cash in on 9 of their 30 (30%) of their power play chances over the last 7-games. The Senators have also allowed 42 or more shots on goal in 5 of their last 10-games.

Price isn't Right

The Montreal Canadians are starting to feel the effects of being without their #1 goaltender Carey Price. Price went down shortly after the Olympic break with a groin injury, and he's been sidelined since. Price has been practicing but is listed as questionable for tonight's game. Without Price in goal, the Canadians have gone 3-5 since resuming play after the break. Peter Budaj has started 7 of the last 8-games in goal in Price's absence.

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Needing to Get Back on Track

The Canadians returned home from a 4-game in 6-day road trip on Wednesday, and went down 4-1 at the hands of the Boston Bruins. The loss was the 3rd in a row suffered by the Canadians. The Montreal power play has gone a dismal 1 for 21 in their last 5-games. The Canadians have seen just 2 of their last 12 home games go over the total, and just 13 of their last 52-games on a Saturday surpass the number.

Final Analysis

Just based on the dire situation that Ottawa is in regarding their playoff chances, and the fact they have had success in its recent history versus Montreal, I'm giving the slightest of edges to the Senators as a money line road underdog.

Free Pick: Ottawa over Montreal as a money line road underdog

[gameodds]7/258680/?r-1=43-19-349/us[/gameodds]

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