The Ottawa Senators really should have won this game. They were up two goals with just over a period left in the game. They had numerous odd man rushes with the chance to bury the Leafs. But in the end, their lack of discipline was too much to overcome.
The Leafs opened the scoring with Mason Raymond's second goal of the season after a nice cross crease pass by Dave Bolland. That play would serve them well all night. Kyle Turris tied the game three minutes later and then the line struck again as Cory Conacher put the Senators ahead for the first time. With the Senators on the power play, Erik Karlsson took a needless penalty in the corner behind his own net. On the ensuing power play, the Senators had the puck in the offensive zone and this time it was Zack Smith's turn to take a bad penalty to put the Senators down two men. This time Raymond would be the passer on a cross crease pass, and Kadri the finisher to tie the game at 2-2.
Jared Cowen and Jason Spezza scored 15 seconds apart midway through the second period to chase James Reimer out of the game and put the Senators seemingly in control at 4-2 up. With just over two minutes left, Spezza took his second penalty of the night and the Leafs pulled to within a goal with 17 seconds left in the period.
Early in the third period, the Leafs tied the game on yet another cross crease pass, this time James van Riemsdyk was the beneficiary. Marc Methot took a penatly shortly after but this time Ottawa would manage to kill it off. The clubs traded chances for the rest of the period and the Leafs ended the overtime period on another power play but the game headed to a shootout.
Craig Anderson was only involved in one shootout last year where he didn't make any saves on three attempts. Tonight wouldn't get any better with the Leafs scoring on both attempts and the Senators failing on both of their attempts. The Leafs won the game 5-4 in a shootout in a very frustrating loss for Ottawa.
Shots were 42-36 in Toronto's favour and shot attempts were 80-68 for the Leafs. However, the Leafs had 7:44 of power play time while Ottawa had just 1:24. In 5-on-5 situations, the Senators outshot the Leafs 31-28 and had 58 shot attempts compared to 49 for the Leafs. The Senators had 23 offensive zone face-offs while the Leafs had 15 in 5-on-5 play.
This was a game there for the taking. Ottawa let this one slip and it stings but at least they got a point out of it, which is more than they managed in Toronto last season. Ottawa now heads out west for three games in California and another in Phoenix before finally playing their home opener on the 17th.
Sens Hero: Kyle Turris, Clarke MacArthur
The second line were dominant once again. Turris had three points, MacArthur had an assist and was on the ice for all 3 of Turris' points and had several chances of his own to score.
Honourable mention: Cory Conacher, Patrick Wiercioch and Jared Cowen
Conacher had a goal and was part of the dominant line mentioned above. While he wasn't as good as Turris and MacArthur, he still had a pretty productive night. Wiercioch and Cowen were on the ice for every one of Turris' points and Cowen had a goal himself. Paul MacLean choose to play the second line and second unit together quite frequently and all five were on the ice for the 2-1 and 3-2 goal and everyone except Conacher was on for the 1-1 goal.
Sens killer: Penalties and defensive play
As mentioned above, the Senators actually did quite well in this game when it was a 5-on-5 game. The Leafs had six power plays and the Senators had only one. The defensive coverage was really unable to defend the cross crease pass tonight. Jared Cowen was caught standing around on the 1-1 goal, the 2-2 goal was tough because it was a 5-on-3 but it was another cross crease pass. The 4-4 tying goal saw Erik Karlsson unable to stop a pass across the crease from Kessel. This is all in addition to numerous near misses on cross crease passes throughout the night.
- Bobby Ryan has yet to score a goal in his first two games. Jakob Silfverberg has two already. Hopefully Ryan scores before they play Anaheim on Sunday or the questions are going to become unbearable.
- Zack Smith's return to the penalty kill might be over. Despite being shorthanded several times, he was on the ice for only 28 seconds of shorthanded ice time. He took a penalty in those 28 seconds.
- Jared Cowen and Chris Phillips both played over 5 minutes on the penalty kill, while Marc Methot was under 3 minutes.
- Joe Corvo actually had a pretty good debut I thought. It wasn't an amazing showing by any stretch, but it was worlds better than Eric Gryba on Friday.
- The second line is a lot better than the first line right now. Spezza played slightly more on 5-on-5, but Turris had more total ice time than any forward thanks to his shorthanded ice time.
- It probably shouldn't come as a surprise that the first line isn't firing on all cylinders with Spezza missing the last half of preseason.
- Jean-Gabriel Pageau won only 2 out of 12 face-offs.
- Craig Anderson's last save in a shootout was on 31 March 2012.