The Ottawa Senators began the game with an excellent chance to get the horn blaring as the Washington Capitals gifted them back-to-back power plays. Yet nine minutes into the game, the shot count was only 1-0… for Washington. Another two failed Senators power play? Water wet, sky blue, etc. From that point on, the Senators ramped up the pressure but failed to score, finishing the period up 11-4 in shots.
The second period started out a little better, with Ottawa even getting a shot in the first 75 seconds when Kyle Turris fired a light wrist shot from the top of the circle at Capitals goalie Brayden Holtby… and scored. Turris' goal snapped a personal 13-game scoring drought and was the 100th point in his NHL career. That lead was for naught as ten minutes later the Capitals scored on a bizarre play by Martin Erat, who bobbled the puck awkwardly to Mike Ribeiro who batted it past Craig Anderson on only their 8th shot of the game.
Barely two minutes later, Brayden Holtby attempted to wish Mika Zibanejad a happy 20th birthday with a free goal, but accidentally passed the puck to Cory Conacher instead who easily scored his 11th of the season to make it 2-1 for Ottawa.
Alex Ovechkin tried his damnedest to tie the game for the Capitals in the third but couldn't pull it off, probably because Ottawa is a playoff team or something. But despite the effort, even the hottest player in the NHL couldn't help Washington. With the goalie pulled, Kyle Turris fired the puck into an empty net, securing a 3-1 victory for the Senators and ending an 8-game win streak for the Capitals.
Sens Hero: Mika Zibanejad
No goals, no assists, but the birthday boy was on fire tonight. Three shots in the first, three in the second, and another in the third. Zibanejad's dad was in attendance tonight and his son put on a show for him. I have to believe Mehrdad is impressed.
Sens Hero: Kyle Turris
Did something Kyle Turris rarely does: scored a goal. And then, something rarer: scored another goal. If history truly repeats itself, we can expect two more goals in his next three games.
Sens Hero: Cory Conacher
Sure, anybody could have scored his goal, but Conacher was a little spitfire all night. Very good with the puck and finding areas to sneak passes, and surprisingly physical (5 hits, for whatever that stat is worth) for someone his size.
Sens Hero: Brayden Holtby
Mika Zibanejad was on the other side of the crease, but it's the thought that counts.
Sens Zero: Power Play
How is the power play this bad? Sure, Erik Karlsson isn't on the roster (yet), but there's no way an NHL-level power play should be this consistently awful. Zero for three on the night.
Honourable Mention: Craig Anderson
Didn't have a lot of work, but made a huge save on admittedly non-sniper Eric Fehr with 8 minutes left in the third. Washington's Aaron Volpatti made a beautiful breakaway pass to Fehr who bore down with the tying goal on his stick, only to be outdone by the current best American goalie in the NHL.
Shot Chart: Wait, the Senators doubled someone in shots this time?