Today was a very good day for yours truly. First, I was told early in the morning that I was being promoted at workplace. Second, my favorite NFL team, the Baltimore Ravens clinched a playoff spot. Finally, the Ottawa Senators pounded the Philadelphia Flyers 7-4 in a wild game.
I never expected Ottawa to score this many goals against a stingy defense like the Flyers’ D. At one point the tell-tale of the game was when Nick Foligno was on the ice in the 1st period, and he was dead tired and had the puck in Philadelphia zone in a 1-on-3. Foligno went on his famous backhand, deked Chris Pronger, and hit the post past a sprawling Brian Boucher. It was just that kind of game. No matter how hard Philadelphia played in the 2nd, Ottawa came back to win the game.
Alex Kovalev got his first career 4-goal game, and it was an amazing sight to see. He dominated the game right from puck drop until the last horn signaled. He was the best player for the Sens in December and it looks like he may continue that in January. Them most interesting and important thing is that Kovalev has somewhat found some huge chemistry with Ryan Shannon. Shannon is seemingly finishing Kovalev’s sweet passes and Kovy is using Shannon as a deploy to the net. It will be hard to split these guys up once all injuries clear up.
The other storyline was Chris Kelly’s stupendous game. His two goals gave Ottawa early and late advantages and he also assisted on Jarkko Ruutu’s goal. Kelly may not have those “Hands of Stone” if he continues this torrid scoring streak. One oddity is that Kelly has 21 points (!) on the season, two more than Jason Spezza, albeit Spez had been injured all season.
The guy who looks to get a goal soon is Jonathan Cheechoo. He was demoted to the fourth line with Shean Donovan and Jesse Winchester today, but he kept on rolling. He’s been winning battles and been getting to the puck first all season. Now it’s just a matter of getting the pucks in the back on the net.
The one blip of today was Pascal Leclaire. He was horrible. I never want to say Snoopy was bad in a game because he’s never had a horrible game so far, but he had one tonight. All goals were his fault, and all were ones he had to have. The Aaron Asham goal shouldn’t have counted because it was clearly goaltender intereference. Either way, expect Brian Elliott to start against the Boston Bruins. Pascal needs some sort of mini-break and we need him to be sharp against Washington.
By the way, did anyone also catch how many hats were thrown when Alex got the trick. Almost none. Scotiabank Place was almost soldout today, but nobody cared to celebrate Kovalev’s 3rd goal. People have to realize that they do get their hats back. Just pathetic if you ask me.