Programming note – Sharks-Senators coverage starts today at 7:00 p.m. with Sharks Pregame Live on CSN California
WHERE THEY STAND
Sharks: 15-9-1, 31 points, 2nd Pacific Division
Senators: 15-9-2, 32 points, 2nd Atlantic Division
PREGAME NEWS AND NOTES
***After undergoing a minor surgical procedure on Saturday to get a screw removed from his previously repaired ankle, Logan Couture is good go to against the Senators. Couture has eight points (6g, 2a) in his last nine games.
Defenseman David Schlemko, though, is out with an apparent leg or ankle injury after he was hurt – but later returned – against Montreal on Friday. Pete DeBoer indicated Schlemko’s injury isn’t serious.
“I came back from our weekend off and all the news was positive, so I would say he’s day-to-day,” said the coach.
Dylan DeMelo will draw in on the third pair with Brenden Dillon. Mirco Mueller was also recalled from the Barracuda.
***The Sharks resume their schedule after a rare four-day break, and will attempt to pick up where they left off. Friday’s 2-1 win over the Canadiens was their sixth in the last seven games.
“I know we’re recharged mentally and physically, but we’ve got to find that level again as quickly as possible and hopefully it doesn’t take too long tonight,” Pete DeBoer said.
Couture said the approach would be to, “just try and keep it simple. Stay out of the box, forecheck on them, get some shifts where we’re not caught in our own end.”
***Ottawa will be playing the second of a difficult four-game road trip. They were spanked by the Penguins on Monday, 8-5, and flew across the country on Tuesday.
If they are looking for sympathy for their schedule, they won’t get it from the Sharks’ coach.
“I find it sometimes a little comical when I hear Eastern teams complaining about travel and road trips. I read something that they were not happy with their schedule. Give me a break,” DeBoer said with a smile. “It’s what we deal with, and you do the best you can."
Ottawa is 6-4-0 on the road, while San Jose is 9-3-0 at SAP Center.
KEEP AN EYE ON...
Sharks: Martin Jones. The Sharks goalie has been a rock during the team’s recent upswing, and his 1.99 goals-against average for the season in good for fifth in the NHL (minimum eight games played). Since getting pulled against the Penguins on Nov. 5, Jones is 8-2-1 with a 1.46 GAA and .945 SP and two shutouts. On Monday, he was named as the NHL’s Third Star of the Week.
Senators: Erik Karlsson. Karlsson leads the Senators in scoring with 24 points (6g, 18a), surpassing Brent Burns for most in the league among defensemen. The two-time Norris Trophy winner and Ottawa captain posted four points on Monday in Pittsburgh (1g, 3a), and has nine points in his last eight games. He’s third in the league in average time on ice (27:16 per game).
Patrick Marleau – Joe Thornton – Joe Pavelski
Melker Karlsson – Logan Couture – Joel Ward
Mikkel Boedker – Chris Tierney – Joonas Donskoi
Kevin Labanc – Tommy Wingels – Micheal Haley
Paul Martin – Brent Burns
Marc-Edouard Vlasic – Justin Braun
Brenden Dillon – Dylan DeMelo
Martin Jones (starter)
Mike Hoffman – Derick Brassard – Mark Stone
Ryan Dzingel – Kyle Turris – Bobby Ryan
Zack Smith – Jean-Gabriel Pageau – Tom Pyatt
Buddy Robinson – Chris Kelly – Chris Neil
Andreas Englund – Erik Karlsson
Dion Phaneuf – Cody Cedi
Mark Borowiecki – Chris Wideman
Mike Condon (starter)
Sharks: David Schlemko (lower body) and Tomas Hertl (right knee sprain) are out.
Senators: Marc Methot (hip), Fredrik Claesson (lower body), Curtis Lazar (concussion) are Craig Anderson (personal) are out.
“I think I have a lot to improve. I think I’m pretty happy the way I’m playing two ways. I think I’m responsible defensively and creating scoring chances, but just kind of not being able to get on the scoreboard enough. I want to score more.” – Joonas Donskoi