For a majority of the NHL season to date, the Ottawa Senators have been on the outside of the playoffs looking in. But they have also been tantalizingly close to edging into the mix on many occasions, only to fall back behind and have to scramble to play catch-up.
The tease that has been the Senators season so far needs to come to and end, and now. With 3 games in 4 nights, starting Saturday, the Senators have a chance to make a dent in the 5 point gap that stands between them and the 8th spot in the standings.
It won’t be easy, as after the game against fierce rival Montreal Saturday night they have a quick turnaround against the red hot Colorado Avalanche late Sunday afternoon back at home. Then after a day off they host the New York Rangers, who have struggled of late and are fighting for a playoff spot of their own.
For the Senators to make any headway, they can’t continue the two steps forward, one step back shuffle that has plagued them all season. They need to put a great 7 or 8 game stretch where they earn 14 or 15 points to erase the gap.
That means playing consistent hockey for 60 minutes in all 3 zones. It is something that has been their Achilles heel this season, and that has to have an about-face immediately for the Senators to have the desired levels of success.
After a 4 day break, maybe just maybe, the Senators can do the improbable.
Or, they will fall out of contention quickly and douse the spark. Either way is better than the win one, lose one tease the team has put forth so far.