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Ottawa Senators Gameday Preview: Edmonton Oilers

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The Ottawa Senators find themselves in must-win territory after back-to-back losses to the Calgary Flames and Vancouver Canucks. If they are defeated by the Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday (March 14), it will all but end their playoff hopes – such is the importance of their clash with the team captained by Connor McDavid.

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“There are parts of the game we need to clean up,” said forward Austin Watson after their defeat in Calgary. “That being said, you do have to address it and have a short memory because this time of year the next one matters as much as any of the rest. It’s tough. It [stinks]. It’s back-to-back games with outcomes you don’t want.”

Austin Watson Ottawa Senators
Austin Watson, Ottawa Senators (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

The Senators performed feebly in their 5-1 loss to the Flames and dropped six points behind the wildcard places as a result. They also saw Thomas Chabot and Mathieu Joseph leave the contest early due to injury. Bluntly, it was a terrible outcome for Ottawa – will they be able to bounce back with their season on the line versus the Oilers?

Senators’ Injury Concerns Before Oilers Clash

Smith will have a couple of marquee decisions to make if Chabot is unable to play versus the Oilers. While the 26-year-old has endured a bumpy season, he has retained his position as the team’s top defenceman and ice-time leader.

Related: 3 Senators Who Need to Step Up for Playoff Chase

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Chabot, even with his mistakes this season, is an important puzzle piece for Smith – which complicates the Senators’ trip to Edmonton. If the Canadian is unavailable, it will force rookie Jake Sanderson into an elevated role versus the ridiculous firepower at the disposal of the Oilers. It wouldn’t be ideal.

Senators Must Rediscover Scoring Form Versus Oilers

The Senators have been an offensive non-entity since they scored five on the Kraken in Seattle. They found twine twice in Vancouver and were limited to one goal by the Flames. But is there hope for them versus the Oilers?

Edmonton conceded seven to the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday – and allowed the same number versus the Winnipeg Jets a week earlier. The Oilers never know what to expect from their tandem of Stuart Skinner and Jake Campbell – which should jolt the Senators into life.

Tim Stutzle Ottawa Senators
Tim Stutzle, Ottawa Senators (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

Despite the team’s recent decline, Tim Stützle has seven points (three goals, four…

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