It was a bit of a surreal night in Ottawa. It was the first game the Senators played since the exodus of Jarkko Ruutu, Chris Kelly, and Brian Elliott. For Kelly it was also his first game with his new team, the first time in his career he played in the visitor's end at Scotiabank Place. The Senators' much-depleted roster featured seven players who have spent significant time with the AHL's Binghamton Senators, making it feel almost more like a preseason game than a regular season matchup.
For much of the game, the Senators were the better team. Robin Lehner was solid and the forwards were generating chances. It seemed as if the Bruins were taking the Senators lightly, which given the lineup the Senators iced is understandable. Bobby Butler scored his third of the season in the second period before Brad Marchand tied it four minutes later. Nathan Horton made it 2-1 midway through the third period on a blown offside call, perfectly encapsulating Ottawa's season to this point. Robin Lehner would blow a tire a few minutes later and allow two quick goals, putting the game safely out of reach for the Bruins.
Chris Kelly's debut in black, white, and yellow was underwhelming. He played well, but had no shots on goal, no points, was even in +/-, and 4-5 in face-offs. A tribute video was playing during one of the first period breaks, and the crowd gave him a large ovation. Classy move by the organization and the city.
Lehner was excellent in the first two periods and half of the third period, but his implosion 15 minutes into the third cost Ottawa the game. Goals 32 seconds apart by Dennis Seidenberg and Brad Marchand sealed the win for the Bruins. It's important to remember that Robin Lehner is still very young and nights like this will happen, but it's still difficult to watch.
Sens Killer: Brad Marchand
Two goals for the Bruins' rookie gave him the second multi-goal game of his career. Marchand had 4 shots on goal and was +2.
Trade Value Increased: Alex Kovalev, Filip Kuba
The Senators' second goal came on a power play late in the third period when Peter Regin sent a long pass to Kuba, who fired the puck at the net where it was deflected in by Kovalev. Teaming up for that goal can only help their trade value going forward.
Next on the Block: Milan Michalek
Michalek received the "A" that previously belonged to Chris Kelly, which in turn previously belonged to Mike Fisher. Michalek's mystery envelope with his next team is waiting in his locker stall. Expect a trade tomorrow.
Goalie-Go-Round: Pascal Leclaire, Craig Anderson
Valiant moment for Pascal Leclaire tonight. Although he's off the IR, Leclaire's not quite ready to play games yet. But with newcomer Craig Anderson (still sounds weird) still on his way to the rink, Leclaire suited up for warmups and most of the first period before Anderson arrived. It hasn't been confirmed yet, but it'd be very surprising if Anderson didn't get the start tomorrow night against Toronto.
- Erik Karlsson was a -3
- Chris Phillips and Brian Lee helped their trade value by both being +1
- Zack Smith played 15:24, the second-most ice time in his career. He also had 6 hits, the most on either team (and 13% of all the hits in the game)
- Bobby Butler became the second Senator to score in three consecutive games this season. The other is Alex Kovalev
- Andre Benoit was -2 to start his NHL career
- Francis Lessard played only 4:51, but he had 2 PIMs and 3 hits
- Jason Spezza was a beast in the faceoff circle, going 14-9 while taking 37% of all the draws
- Brian Lee tied Chris Phillips for the most blocked shots with 3