The senators took on the Boston Bruins tonight to end a stretch in which 9 of 10 games have been on the road. A worst case scenario would leave them 5-5 in those games but the Sens hoped to do better than that. The team was also hoping to break the three game losing streak they carried into TD Garden. The challenge was tough though, as they were going up against the defending Stanley Cup champions who had already beaten them twice this season. Here’s how the game went:
The teams began a game that was more suited for an all-star game than a regular season NHL game. Both teams exchanged offensive chances, with little defense being played. It caught up to the Sens when Gonchar got called for hooking as he got caught on a lazy backcheck. It would cost them as Chara sent one of his 108.8 mph shots through the legs of Craig Anderson for the night’s first goal. Things than switched to a more physical style, beginning with a fight between Neil and Thorton. Less than two minutes later Konopka challenged MacQuaid. In the end the Sens seemed to get all the momentum from it as Colin Greening scored with just over a minute left in the period to tie the game. The score remained 1-1 heading into the first intermission.
The momentum from that goal stuck with the Sens to open the middle frame. The team got their first lead of the game off a blast by Turris, with assists going to line mates Alfredsson and Foligno. It was Erik Karlsson who would then increase the lead. Heading in on a 2 on 1 with Chris Neil, Karlsson made the smart move of shooting, using Neil as a decoy, and just like that it was 3-1 Ottawa. But this time it would be Boston scoring the late goal to end the period. Lucic’s wrister from the slot found the back of the net to make it a one goal game heading into intermission.
Now it was the Bruins who had momentum on their side and it showed as they outworked the Sens early and earned a power play in the first minute. Marchand scored to give Boston their second power play goal of the game that more importantly, made it a 3-3 game. It followed by another Bruins goal, this one in an unusual fashion. Seidenberg fired the puck in the Senators zone literally from center ice. The puck took a few weird bounces (and was maybe deflected early on) before hopping past Craig Anderson. The fluke goal was unfortunately the game winner as the Sens fell 4-3.
*** SenShot’s Three Stars ***
1st Star: Colin Greening – Greening played an excellent game all around. He got the team’s first goal late in the first to not only tie the game but give the Sens the momentum in the second. He put lots of pressure on offensively with 5 shots on goal plus many others off target. His defensive game was just as good as he saved a sure goal, whacking the puck off the goal line, and finished plus-1 in the loss.
2nd Star: Joe Corvo – Had two points, both very key – he had the primary assists on the tying goal, and the game winning goal. Was one of only four Bruins to finish with a positive plus/minus rating at plus-1.
3rd Star: Filip Kuba – Kuba assisted on two of the three goals, and was the only Senator with a multi-point night. Also finished plus-1 in the losing effort.
I think most can agree the officiating problem wasn’t bad calls against the Sens, but lack of calls against the Bruins. Knowing this, the power plays the Bruins had were legitimate and therefore refs had nothing to do with Ottawa blowing their lead. The team however wasn’t given any of their own extra opportunities to score and maybe take a bigger lead or tie the game at the end. They had a whopping 0 power plays that is unusual in any game and just horrible when it’s against the most penalized team in the league.
In the end, the Senators really didn’t play a bad game and it’s an unfortunate loss. The team went head to head and helf their ground the first two period against the defending Stanley Cup champions, but some bad luck put them in a position they couldn’t recover from. The Sens need to take the good things from this game and move on. A win in the next game Friday against the New York Islanders will be crucial. Until next time, Sens fans!
Thanks for reading and as always, comments are welcomed.
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