Senators-Bruins Preview

The Associated Press

The Boston Bruins haven't dropped three straight games all season. Defeats to the Ottawa Senators have been even more rare in recent years.

Boston looks to avoid a third consecutive loss as it goes for a 14th win in 15 meetings with visiting Ottawa on Monday night.

The Bruins (26-11-4), one point behind Montreal for the Northeast Division lead, had won five of six before falling 2-1 to the New York Islanders on Thursday and 4-2 at Carolina on Saturday.

Their two power-play goals allowed in those contests matched the total given up over the previous nine games.

''We had some brain cramps out there,'' coach Claude Julien said. ''The mistakes we made were not helpful - two power-play goals. Those are things we're dealing with right now.''

There were positives, though, as Tyler Seguin scored for the third consecutive contest and Milan Lucic ended a nine-game goal drought.

"Hopefully this is something that I can build off," Lucic told the team's official website. "There hasn't been too many bounces where I can have something like that to hopefully build my confidence off of. Usually it's a goal like that that gets things started again.

"Hopefully we can keep getting better as the season winds down here."

Seguin scored and Lucic had two assists in Boston's 3-2 win over Ottawa on April 2, the Senators' second loss during a five-game skid.

Ottawa (21-14-6) has won two straight since, beating Philadelphia 3-1 on Thursday and New Jersey 2-0 on Friday. It concludes a seven-game road trip Monday that began with the defeat to the Bruins.

The Senators are in sixth place in the Eastern Conference, four points ahead of ninth-place Winnipeg.

"We've done a good job of staying positive," captain Daniel Alfredsson said. "We lost five in a row but our fourth and fifth games we felt we were going in the right direction. The last two wins are a reward for that hard play, and you build some confidence from that.''

Craig Anderson made 33 saves and improved his league-leading goals-against average to 1.53.

"We got two points and that's all that matters," Anderson said. "It felt like I was leaving a lot of (rebounds) out there, but the battle level in front of the net was outstanding in getting to the loose pucks."

Anderson, though, hasn't been very good against the Bruins. He's 1-7-0 with a 4.20 GAA in his last eight starts versus Boston, which has held Ottawa to two or fewer goals in six straight meetings.

The Bruins have outscored the Senators 23-11 while winning six of seven home matchups.

Boston's Patrice Bergeron suffered a concussion, his fourth in less than six seasons, when Ottawa forward Colin Greening hit him with an accidental elbow in the most recent meeting.

Bergeron has missed the last six games, but he participated in the morning skate Saturday and could be available for this contest. Fellow center Brad Marchand, though, remains out with a mild concussion suffered Wednesday versus New Jersey.

Tuukka Rask, who's posted a 1.21 GAA while winning his four career starts versus Ottawa, is likely to be in net.

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