The Ottawa Senators have lost four in a row and find themselves in a dogfight for Atlantic Division positioning, but there’s some good news: all-world defenseman Erik Karlsson is back tonight.
Karlsson’s been sidelined since March 28, but he’ll suit up against the Detroit Red Wings on Monday.
Other key games in the division include the Toronto Maple Leafs facing the Buffalo Sabres and the Montreal Canadiens getting a chance to clinch the Atlantic by beating the Florida Panthers.
Just look at how snug things are for the Senators, even ignoring – for a moment – the possibility of the Lightning possibly booting them out of the playoffs altogether.*
2. Bruins – 92 poitns in 79 games
3. Maple Leafs – 91 points in 77 games (37 ROW)
Senators – 91 points in 77 games
The worst-case scenario is unlikely for Ottawa, but falling behind in seeding is a very real threat. Getting Karlsson back against a Detroit Red Wings team that’s been awfully frisky lately could certainly help to stop the bleeding.
Karlsson’s 68 points easily leads the team in scoring, by the way.
* – The Lightning face long odds in that regard … but it isn’t impossible.