Jared Cowen had a rough night. (Photo by Jana Chytilova/Freestyle Photography/Getty Images)
You know how the Senators were supposed to come out firing against a weaker opponent? Well that didn't happen. The good news is that the Senators finally picked up a point. The bad news is that they lost for the fifth straight game, matching their longest losing streak of the season.
The Islanders controlled the play for the first period but the Senators managed to escape with a 0-0 score. Shots were 14-8 for New York after one and scoring chances were 9-4 for the visitors. The second period was close to ending with a similar score until Zack Smith scored a brutal goal that went off Evgeni Nabokov's glove with just 13 seconds left in the period. At the intermission, shots were 9-7 for Ottawa in the middle frame and scoring chances were 5-2 for the Senators.
Unfortunately, for the second straight game, the Senators couldn't hold a lead in the third period. At the 5:27 mark of the third, Matt Martin tied the game after being left completely wide open due to Jared Cowen inexplicably chasing the puck carrier that was already covered by Sergei Gonchar. Ottawa didn't generate much in the third period but managed to take it into overtime after being outshot 9-6 and outchanced 6-2 in the third period.
The overtime winner saw Cowen once again leave his man all alone, this time Mark Eaton was the beneficiary. It wasn't a good performance by the Senators and two brain cramps from their rookie defencemen were the difference.
Sens zero: Jared Cowen
He didn't have a bad game overall, but to make such decisions on both goals by the Islanders was frustrating to watch.
Honourable mention: Craig Anderson
He didn't make a lot of spectacular saves, but he stopped 30 of 32 shots. Solid night for him after struggling in Boston. Even though it is a back-to-back against Toronto, it is a near certainty he plays.
Playing hurt: Jason Spezza
Spezza was a question mark on whether he would play. With the team on a long losing streak, Spezza gutted one out, but played only 15:44. If Spezza's health becomes a concern, things could get even tougher for Ottawa. If the club wasn't on a losing streak, Spezza might not have even played tonight.
The optimistic view: The Senators are still in a playoff spot and are still 8th in the east in terms of points per game. Let's not get too gloomy yet.