It looked like is was going to be deja vu all over again for the Ottawa Senators, as they fell behind 2-0 just past the midway point of the first period. However, they stemmed the tide, got the ship righted and rolled to a 4-2 win in their first ever stadium game. I hesitate in saying outdoor game, because rain forced the roof of BC Place Stadium to be closed, but it was packed with almost 50,000 fans.
It didn’t look good from the start, as Ottawa took the first penalty and Jason Garrison‘s blast from the point on the power play deflected off the stick of Kyle Turris and past Craig Anderson. An Erik Karlsson turnover just after another penalty kill allowed Zack Kassian to make it 2-0 and with it the Senators’ playoff hopes seemed to be fading fast. Ottawa got on the board just over 15 minutes in when Erik Condra picked up a rebound in the slot and fired a shot. The puck was apparently tipped by Clarke MacArthr and then went off Kevin Bieksa‘s glove past Eddie Lack. Karlsson tied it up for Ottawa on a power play of their own, moving across the ice and laying a nice shot back to the far side past Lack.
Cody Ceci got his second goal of the season, jumping into the rush after Milan Michlek stole the puck at the Ottawa blue line. He dished to Spezza, who found Ceci on the move and he put a wrister past Lack. Just past the midway point of the game, and the Senators had their first lead since February 6th against Buffalo. From that point on it was a case of hanging onto the lead, which they did for nearly half of the game, until Colin Greening put away a pass from Chris Neil into the empty net to seal the deal and make it a 4-2 final.
NOTES AND OBSERVATIONS
- Without a sky and either sun or snow, it didn’t feel like an outdoor game at all. Sure, the stadium is bigger, but it was even hotter than a normal arena by all accounts. It was probably a different experience for players and fans alike, but like I have said about previous outdoor games, it is primarily an in-house experience.
- A much needed win as the Senators started a 4 game road trip that next sees them play back to back games in Alberta.
- The Senators moved within 3 points of Detroit for the final playoff spot.
Ottawa heads to Edmonton for the first half of the Alberta back to back.