Senators Game Preview

DON BRENNAN, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 8:36 AM ET

7 P.M., TSN, TEAM 1200

OTTAWA SENATORS (29-21-4)

AT

PITTSBURGH PENGUINS (33-20-1)

WINCHESTER CLOSE

Senators C Jesse Winchester participated in his first practice since suffering his second right kneecap injury of the season. Winchester has missed the last nine games and, according to coach Cory Clouston, is "close" to returning. "It was great today to finally get back out with the boys," said Winchester, who threw some balls with the Gee-Gees basketball team warming up at Scotiabank Place Wednesday morning. "It feels strong, I feel fast, I feel refreshed." Winchester, who has two goals and six assists in 29 games.

ICE CHIPS

Clouston switched Alex Kovalev and Jonathan Cheechoo so that the former now plays on a line with Mike Fisher and Nick Foligno. "I guess he's trying to see if it's going to make a difference," said Kovalev. "Our line really didn't play well (vs. New Jersey). We pretty much spent 60-70% of the time in the offensive zone, but we're not scoring too many goals. Most of the goals I've scored so far, it's always been during a change." ... The Pens have won five of their last seven.

INJURIES

SENS: G Pascal Leclaire (concussion), out; C Jesse Winchester (knee), out.

PENS: LW Chris Kunitz (abdominal), out; C Max Talbot (undisclosed), day-to-day; RW Bill Guerin (undisclosed), day-to-day.

Keep your eye on these two players in tonight's game

71 EVGENI MALKIN, C

Has five goals and five assists in the last five games. Had his fourth career hat trick in an 8-2 win over Ottawa Dec. 23. Has four goals in three games vs. Senators this season.

11 DANIEL ALFREDSSON, RW

Has five goals and five assists in six games since returning from a separated shoulder -- an injury suffered Dec. 23 in Pittsburgh when hit by Penguins centre Craig Adams.


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