5 NHL questions: Senators look to make up ground in Atlantic

Gregory Shamus

A daily feature which asks the five biggest questions about today's NHL action. Will they be answered? (That doesn't count as one of the five questions.)

1. Can the Red Wings overcome their injuries?

Detroit lost Pavel Datsyuk and Jakub Kindl on Saturday to injury and will stumble into Buffalo shorthanded and 2-3-5 in its last 10 games. Such a quick turnaround doesn't bode well for the depleted Wings, but their opponent hasn't been especially impressive as of late either. Detroit will rely heavily on Henrik Zetterberg to score on Sunday.

2. Can Cam Ward steal a win for the Hurricanes?

Cam Ward's return from injured reserve went well on Saturday, even though his team didn't earn a win. He stopped 35 of 38 shots and managed to get the Canes to overtime before David Krejci scored the overtime winner for Boston. He'll have to play well again if Carolina wants to snap its four-game winless streak.

3. Will Ottawa's power play be the difference?

This is a two-pronged question. On one hand, the Senators have been converting power play opportunities at a 19 percent clip this season. Not too shabby. On the other hand, the Hurricanes have four short-handed goals in the last four games. The law of averages (and simple logic) suggest that streak won't continue, but the Senators could decide the game by how they score or protect the puck on their power play on Sunday.

4. Can the Sabres take advantage of Detroit early?

On paper, the Sabres don't match up well with Detroit. (Or any team, for that matter.) But Detroit has struggled to catch up with teams when it gives up the first goal. On the other hand, the Sabres have not won a single game this season when they score first. Something's gotta give, right?

5. Can Ottawa keep climbing in the Atlantic?

The Senators snapped a 1-4-0 stretch with a win on Saturday and now find themselves seven points out of a playoff spot in the East. They can keep making up ground on Detroit with a win on Sunday.

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