It’s impossible to avenge a crushing postseason defeat in November.
Facing the Devils for the first time since losing Game 7 of the Eastern Conference finals in May, the Senators hope to end a four-game winless streak when they welcome New Jersey to the Corel Centre.
Advancing to the conference finals for the first time in team history, Ottawa rallied from a 3-1 series deficit against New Jersey to a force a Game 7 at home. However, Jeff Friesen ended the Senators’ dream of reaching their first Stanley Cup Final by scoring the winning tally with 2:14 to play.
Ottawa, which won the President’s Trophy last season, has been underachieving thus far this year, going 0-2-2-1 against teams .500 or better.
The Senators are 0-2-2 in their last four overall, and are coming off a 3-3 tie with the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday.
Marian Hossa scored twice, but the Senators blew a two-goal lead, leaving them winless since a 6-2 win over Montreal on Oct. 25.
“We’re not all on the same page,” Hossa said. “It’s still early in the season. There’s no reason to panic.”
The Devils skated to a 1-1 tie with the Toronto Maple Leafs on Friday.
Corey Schwab, making his first appearance of the season in place of Martin Brodeur, stopped 27 shots while Jamie Langenbrunner scored his fifth goal of the season. The tie ended the Devils’ four-game winning streak, but extended their unbeaten run to five.
“He was phenomenal,” Langenbrunner said. “He made some huge saves and kept us in the game early. Anytime you can have a backup come in who hasn’t played for eight months and play that well, it’s great for our team.”
New Jersey captain Scott Stevens left the team before the game because of a death in his family. His status was uncertain for Saturday’s game.