The Ottawa Senators lost 4-1 to the New York Rangers Friday night in Ottawa, continuing a sequence of six games where they have alternated wins and losses. On the bright side, the Rangers pulled five points ahead of the Toronto Maple Leafs, and we can be all happy about that right?
Stats from tonight
The Senators fell behind midway through the first period after Sean Avery beat Chris Phillips along the board for the puck. Vinny Prospal then fired a shot from near the boards that Craig Anderson really should have stopped. It was the first weak goal allowed by Anderson - in his seventh game.
It stayed 1-0 until just six minutes into the second period when Mats Zuccarello was left all alone by Brian Lee in front of the net, giving him a wide open net to put home the rebound. Twelve seconds later, Artem Anisimov blew by Filip Kuba at the blue line and Erik Karlsson couldn't come over in time, allowing Anisimov to come in alone on Anderson and put the game to bed. Late in the second period, Karlsson had two glorious chances in a matter of seconds, narrowly missing a sure goal and then hitting the post seconds later.
Early in the third period, Karlsson was just about to get off the ice when Derek Stepan received the puck. Once again, Karlsson could not recover in time and Stepan went in alone and scored Two minutes later, the Senators would finally get on the board when Sergei Gonchar scored a power play goal, his first since January 25. Jason Spezza and Erik Karlsson picked up the assists. For Karlsson, it was his team leading 35th point and 26th assist.
Heroes, zeroes and killers
Sens hero: Erik Karlsson
Karlsson led all players with six shots and had an assist. He also had several dangerous rushes and hit the post as well late in the second period. He was on the ice for a couple of goals against though but he was the Senators most dangerous player on the night. He played a team high 23:14 tonight.
More after the jump.
Sens killer: Dan Girardi.
Girardi was a beast tonight. He finished the night with five hits and eight blocked shots. He played 24:21 of tough hockey tonight, only Marc Staal played more tonight.
Sens killer: Henrik Lundqvist
Lundqvist was great again tonight. He stopped 28 or 29 shots and had several strong stops. The best of the night was an absolutely incredible save in the third period on Marek Svatos. He also had several other strong stops through the night to keep the Senators from getting back into it.
Sens zero: Francis Lessard
He's a waste of a roster space. That is all.
Underwhelming: Craig Anderson
Now I am not blaming tonight's loss on Craig Anderson, two of the four goals were partial breakaways and a third was a wide open rebound. But the first goal was a weak one and we have come to expect Craig to steal games for us. It wasn't to be tonight.