There is no arena the Ottawa Senators enjoy visiting more than Nassau Coliseum.
Ottawa will look to extend a 17-game unbeaten streak on Long Island when it visits the New York Islanders and one of the league’s hottest lines.
The Senators have dominated the series with the Islanders no matter the location, but have gone 17 straight games (13-0-4) without a loss at Nassau Coliseum. The streak was extended to 17 when Ottawa won both games played on Long Island in the Eastern Conference quarterfinals last season.
New York’s last home win against Ottawa was a 5-4 victory on Jan. 6, 1996. Including playoffs, the Senators are 19-3-7 in the series since the start of the 1996-97 season.
After starting slowly for the second straight game, the Senators needed a power-play goal from captain Daniel Alfredsson midway through the second period Saturday for a 1-1 tie against visiting Buffalo.
Patrick Lalime made 37 saves for Ottawa, winless in two straight after outscoring opponents 18-4 during a four-game win streak.
“I think early in the game we lacked intensity,” said Senators defenseman Zdeno Chara, a former Islander. “We didn’t come out with our ‘A’ game, and we kind of waited for them.”
Right wing Marian Hossa had his eight-game points streak snapped by Buffalo. Hossa, tied with Radek Bonk for the team lead with 12 points, has recorded at least one point in each of his first eight games this season.
Hossa has played particularly well against the Islanders, collecting 13 goals and 24 points in 19 career games.
The Islanders played one of their most complete games of the season Saturday in a 4-1 victory over visiting Anaheim.
“We were really skating and working,” Islanders coach Steve Stirling said. “It was good to see. More important, it was seen virtually the entire game, with very little let-up.”
New York’s top line of Alexei Yashin, Mariusz Czerkawski and Kvasha combined for two goals and two assists Saturday. The trio has 15 of the team’s 31 goals this season, and 31 points in the Islanders’ first 10 games.
“We’re not thinking much,” Czerkawski said of his line, “and that’s the best situation.”
STANDINGS (through Nov. 1): Senators - 12 points, 3rd place (tied), 4 PB, Northeast Division. Islanders - 12 points, 2nd place (tied), 2 PB, Atlantic Division.
TEAM LEADERS: Senators - Alfredsson, 6 goals; Bonk, 8 assists; Hossa and Bonk, 12 points; Chris Neil, 25 PIM. Islanders - Czerkawski, 8 goals and 12 points; Adrian Aucoin, 7 assists; Eric Cairns and Eric Godard, 29 PIM.
SPECIAL TEAMS (through Nov. 1): Senators - Power play: 27.9 percent (12 for 43), 2nd in NHL. Penalty killing: 79.6 percent (43 for 54), 24th. Islanders - Power play: 14.0 percent (7 for 50), 21st (tied). Penalty killing: 91.8 percent (45 for 49), 1st.
2002-03 SEASON SERIES: Senators, 2-1-1.
LAST MEETING: April 17; Senators, 4-1. At Ottawa, Bonk had two goals and Todd White scored his third goal in three games, as the Senators advanced to the conference finals.
ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Senators - 3-1-0-0 on the road; Islanders - 4-1-0-0 at home.