Since failing to solve Craig Anderson over the weekend, the Boston Bruins haven't had much time to prepare for a potential rematch when they face the Ottawa Senators back home.
That challenge could become more difficult if co-leading scorer David Krejci isn't available.
With the red-hot Anderson projected to be in net, the Senators will try to earn a sweep of this home-and-home set Tuesday night and avoid their longest road losing streak in four years.
Anderson has faced 973 shots, easily a league high, but he's held his own under duress by going 11-2-2 when he's faced 35 or more in a game. That was the case again Sunday when he finished with 38 saves in a 3-1 home win over the Bruins (19-12-4), who have averaged 35.8 shots in their last four games.
The 13-year veteran is 3-0-1 with a 1.72 goals-against average in his last four starts. Even though Anderson has stopped 77 of 79 shots in his past two, the Senators (18-12-6) know they've got to do a better job of keeping opponents from peppering the goal.
“Obviously Andy is playing great for us,” right wing Mark Stone told the team's official website after scoring two goals Sunday. “Asking him to do that every night is not going to cut it. We realize he's a big part of our team, but at the same time we understand he can't do this every night.”
Anderson seems likely to get an opportunity to help Ottawa avoid its first six-game road losing streak since Jan. 16-Feb. 9, 2011. He had dropped four of his previous five starts in Boston with a 4.93 GAA before finishing with 26 saves in a 3-2 overtime victory Jan. 3 in the clubs' last meeting there.
Krejci scored the lone goal against Anderson on Sunday, moving into a tie with Patrice Bergeron for the team lead with 33 points.
The center has a five-game point streak (two goals, five assists) against the Senators, but his status is uncertain after he did not play in the third period with an upper-body injury. Ryan Spooner played between Matt Beleskey and Loui Eriksson in Krejci's place.
Boston also lost defenseman Torey Krug to an undisclosed issue in Saturday's 6-3 loss to Buffalo.
“Krejci is a big part of our team,” coach Claude Julien said, “and when you lose a guy like him — (and) Krug — and not to name the others (who) have been out for a while… We've just got to suck it up, and the guys have to step up and do the job. As simple as that.”
Krejci has scored or assisted on three of the Bruins' five goals over the past four games, and they've dropped the last three to match their longest losing streak of the season.
Julien is expected to give the starting nod to Tuukka Rask after he finished with 19 saves Sunday. Rask owns an NHL-best 1.38 GAA this month among goalies with at least seven starts, but he's 1-2-2 with a 2.57 mark in his last five meetings with the Senators.
The Bruins will have to do a better job against Stone, who has three goals in the last two games. He has five points in his last two against Boston.
The Senators have won four of the past five meetings, including the last two at TD Garden.