Sens hope for 7th straight victory in clash with Bruins

The red-hot Ottawa Senators will aim for a seventh consecutive victory when they visit the struggling Boston Bruins tonight at TD Garden.

The Senators were expected to struggle this season and they surprised nobody by beginning 2011-12 with a 1-5-0 record. However, Ottawa has rebounded with six consecutive victories and each of the club's last five wins have come by just one goal.

Ottawa is on its first six-game winning streak since March 22-April 1, 2010. The Senators haven't posted seven straight victories since a franchise-record 11-game winning streak from Jan. 14-Feb.4, 2010.

While Ottawa has been surging lately, the Bruins are still trying to regain the form that landed them last year's Stanley Cup. Boston has lost three straight games -- all in regulation -- to drop to 3-7-0 on the season.

The Bruins did dominate the Senators last season, winning five of the six encounters between the clubs. Boston has taken nine of 12 overall in the series and the Sens have lost two in a row and eight of their last 11 games in Beantown.

Kaspars Daugavins' first NHL goal wound up being the game-winner in Ottawa's latest victory, as the Sens edged visiting Toronto, 3-2, at Scotiabank Place on Sunday.

Colin Greening and Chris Neil each netted power-play goals for Ottawa, while Robin Lehner made 23 saves to record a win in his season debut.

"At the end of the game, we defended way more than I would have liked. We defended well enough to win the game obviously, but we played most of the third period in our own end," said Ottawa head coach Paul MacLean.

Craig Anderson is expected to be back between the pipes for the Sens tonight. Ottawa's No. 1 goaltender won the first five games during his club's win streak, but he is just 3-5-0 with a 2.94 goals-against average in eight career games against Boston.

Ottawa captain Daniel Alfredsson will miss a second straight game with concussion symptoms. The 38-year-old Swede suffered the head injury in Saturday's win over the New York Rangers.

Boston's two most recent setbacks came against the rival Montreal Canadiens, as the Habs swept the Bruins in a home-and-home series. The B's dropped a 2-1 home decision against Montreal on Thursday and were dealt a 4-2 loss two days later in Quebec.

The Bruins have scored just five goals over their last three games and have hit the net just 21 times in 10 outings this season. Milan Lucic and Tyler Seguin scored the only goals for the Bruins on Saturday.

"It's seems we don't have goal-scoring luck," said Boston defenseman Zdeno Chara. "But we can't be frustrated, we have to keep trying."

Tuukka Rask allowed three goals on 26 shots in Saturday's loss, dropping him to 0-3-0 on the season. Tim Thomas, who is coming off his second Vezina Trophy in three years, is expected to get the start tonight. Thomas is 19-8-2 with a 1.91 GAA and six shutouts in his 29 career appearances against Ottawa.

Bruins forward Benoit Pouliot sat out the last game with an illness and is questionable for tonight's contest.

Boston is just 2-5-0 on home ice this season, while the Sens have a 2-3-0 mark on the road.