NHL Betting Preview (Jan 23): Senators vs. Canadiens Odds

Just five days after a lopsided matchup in Ottawa, the Senators and Canadiens face off once more, this time taking the festivities to the Bell Centre in Montreal. Both teams have had their share of struggles throughout this season and would love to steal two points away from the other in what should be an under-the-radar exciting Atlantic Division matchup.

Bet on Senators vs. Canadiens

OTT -150
MTL +125

The Senators are road moneyline favourites at -150.

Senators vs. Canadiens odds

Senators Moneyline Odds-150
Canadiens Moneyline Odds+125
Puck Line oddsSenators -1.5 (+165), Canadiens +1.5 (-200)
Total Goals line6.5 goals (over -135, under +115)
Time/DateJanuary 23, 7:00 p.m. ET
TVBroadcast: TSN2/5, RDS (French)
Stream: Sportsnet+
(How to watch the NHL in Canada?)

All odds courtesy of

About the Senators (17-24-1 SU, 19-23 ATS, 24-15 o/u)

The Senators have once again turned a season that was supposed to be their breakthrough into a brick wall, currently on pace to even take a step back from the year prior. After firing DJ Smith and bringing in Jacques Martin and Daniel Alfredsson to re-evaluate the team and tighten them up defensively, Ottawa got significantly worse defensively and went from bad to worse, losing eight of their next eleven.

Things have been a little better of late, though, As they’ve gone 3-1-1 in their last five games, including a close overtime loss to the molten-hot Winnipeg Jets, and a win on Sunday against the surprisingly good Philadelphia Flyers. Tim Stutzle led the way in their last victory, potting their second goal and adding an empty netter in 17:43 of ice time. Stutzle hasn’t quite kept up his 39-goal, 90-point clip from last year, but his nine points in his last five games have put him back on a point-per-game track.

About the Canadiens (19-20-7 SU, 28-18 ATS, 24-21 o/u)

For the Habs, it’s been the continuation of a learning process this year, as Martin St. Louis’ team shows signs of improvement in some areas but is still struggling to compete with the higher end of the league. Struggling to both score (26th in the NHL) and prevent goals (29th), it’ll be some time before the group is ready for prime time. Lately, things have been so-so, without very many extended losing skids or winning streaks. At no point since October has the team gone more than two games in either direction of the 0.500 line, which they currently sit one beneath.

Their last game was on Saturday, a barn-burner against the Boston Bruins. Montreal started that game with the lead, but ultimately couldn’t keep up with the division’s top team, conceding nine goals throughout the evening, including four in nine minutes in the third.

Last Matchup

The last game between these two teams was just five days ago, and it was all Ottawa’s. Brady Tkachuk opened the scoring early in the first period, soon to be followed up by Tim Stutzle. Cole Caufield brought Montreal back within one before the opening frame could close, but in the second and third, four unanswered Senators goals put this one out of reach. Michael Pezzetta got the Habs another tally with five minutes to go, but it carried little meaning in a 6-2 result. Montreal will be hoping for much better on their own ice surface tonight.

Projected Lineups

Today’s Ottawa Senators LineupToday’s Montreal Canadiens Lineup
Brady Tkachuk – Josh Norris – Claude Giroux
Ridley Greig – Tim Stutzle – Drake Batherson
Mathieu Joseph – Shane Pinto – Vladimir Tarasenko
Parker Kelly – Rourke Chartier – Zack MacEwen

Jake Sanderson – Artem Zub
Thomas Chabot – Jakob Chychrun
Erik Brannstrom – Jacob Bernard-Docker

Starting In Goal
Joonas Korpisalo
9-15-1, 3.56 GAA, 0.887 SV%
Cole Caufield – Nick Suzuki – Juraj Slafkovsky
Josh Anderson – Jake Evans – Brendan Gallagher
Joshua Roy – Sean Monahan – Joel Armia
Rafael Harvey-Pinard – Tanner Pearson – Michael Pezzetta

David Savard – Michael Matheson
Jayden Struble – Kaiden Gulhe
Arber Xhekaj – Jonathan Kovacevic

Starting In Goal
Jake Allen
5-8-2, 3.48 GAA, 0.901 SV%

Each team has a returning name of interest in this one. Shane Pinto will be the player that many focus on for Ottawa, as he plays his second game since serving a half-season suspension for conduct relating to sports betting. A restricted free agent at the time of the investigation and suspension, Pinto signed a new deal with the team last week that comes in at much less than the expected tag for a 23-year-old with a 20-goal season, taking the league minimum for the remainder of the year. He’ll be looking to prove himself on and off the ice for the remainder of the year, and kicked things off with an assist on Sunday.

For Montreal, all eyes are on Arber Xhekaj, who returns to the team after a stint with the Laval Rocket. Xhekaj had a slow start to his second NHL season before suffering an injury in November, and once he became healthy enough to play, the Habs assigned him to Laval to ramp up with a heavier workload against lighter opponents. On top of playing his normal hard-nosed game, Xkekaj put up the best offensive numbers he’s had since his last junior playoffs, producing 11 points in 17 games. This will be his first game back since being recalled.

Cole Caufield (MTL) to score a goal


Key Injuries

The Senators are missing Anton Forsberg and Travis Hamonic. Neither have a timeline for return at the moment, with the former suffering a groin injury a little under two weeks ago and the latter suffering an upper-body injury on Sunday.

Montreal is nursing a trio of long-term injuries. Kirby Dach is out for the year with a torn ACL and MCL, while Alex Newhook is out for another month or two with a high ankle sprain suffered in December. Joining them is Christian Dvorak, whose season ended just before New Year’s with a torn pectoral muscle to blame.

  • This matchup has typically gone in Ottawa’s favour, with the Senators winning eight of the last ten games between the two teams since May 2021. Montreal fares a bit better on the puck line, though that is still 6-4 in Ottawa’s favour.
  • The Canadiens are 4-6 in their last ten games, going 6-4 against the puck line and 6-4 in favour of the over on total goals.
  • The Senators are worse off in their last 10 (3-7 both straight up and against the puck line), though they’re 2-1 (3-0 puck line) in their last three.
  • No Senators player has more points in their last ten games than captain Brady Tkachuk, with three goals and eight assists in that span. Vladimir Tarasenko leads the team in goals over his last ten with six, and Claude Giroux (5G 5A) and Tim Stutzle (3G 7 A) are both sitting at the point-per-game mark in that same stretch).
  • Tkachuk also remains a weapon for shot volume, with 37 pucks to the net in his last ten games and 19 in his last five.
  • on Montreal’s end, Cole Caufield’s stick is starting to heat up again, with six goals on 38 shots in his last ten games. Sean Monahan leads the team with points in that stretch, scoring two goals and eight assists.

Wagers To Consider

  • There are a couple of nice boosted same-game parlays in this game that lean into some players we focused on above. If you like the Senators tonight, there’s a package that includes the Senators winning, Tkachuk putting up four shots on goal, and getting two points, at +600. That’s up from a regular price of +525. If you want to play it a bit safer, grab just his shots (over 3.5) at -150.
  • On Montreal’s end, you can get them to win with Cole Caufield scoring a goal and picking up 3+ shots on goal at +450, up from +375. I don’t love Montreal to win this one, but I do like him scoring, and you can get him at +145 for a tally. If you’re feeling super frisky, Caufield has been one of the league leaders in game-winners this season, so making that goal the last goal at +1000 could pay some dividends.
  • If I had to guess, Montreal will put a good effort in against a divisional opponent at home tonight. I don’t know if it’ll be enough to win, though it could be with Ottawa’s struggles. I’d give good thought to the Montreal +1.5 puck line at -200.