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Senators suffer painful loss to Panthers, 3-0

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Add Jesse Winchester and Filip Kuba to the list of injured Ottawa players.  Both suffered what appeared to be serious injuries in Ottawa's loss to Florida.  Winchester seemed to hurt his knee and Kuba his wrist.  There were no updates, but don't be surprised if both players miss time, as neither injury looked good. 

One has to wonder if this is the tipping point for the team.  Ottawa came out lackluster in this game and their tentative play left the door open for Florida.  The Panthers dominated for almost the entire game and they are a team that has their own injury issues.  The end result was the Senators giving up two crucial points to a team chasing them in the standings.

There were no heroes on a night like tonight (by my count, Ottawa had just one scoring chance -- Shannon hitting a post on the power play -- though I'm sure there were some others credited), so let's just look at the carnage.

Sens Zeroes: Mike Fisher, Alex Kovalev, Brian Elliott
These are the players that must shoulder the load with so many teammates injured and they failed tonight.  Fisher had no shots on goal, and his faceoff percentage doesn't matter if it's not generating offense. 

Speaking of generating offense, Kovalev did nothing tonight.  Hard to believe this guy scored four goals just a few games ago.

Elliott was frustratingly inconsistent in net tonight.  After making a great glove save, he misplayed the puck behind his own net, freezing his defensemen and feeding the puck to the Panthers, who put together a nice little passing play to allow Rostislav Olesz to tap it into essentially an empty net, despite a diving Elliott's best efforts.  A one-goal deficit became a two goal deficit and the team's body language said they knew there was no way they were getting three goals tonight.  Disheartening.

Sens Killers: Rostislav Olesz, Tomas Vokun, The Powerplay
Olesz had two great chances and buried both of them.  That's really all there is to say about that. 

Vokun earned one of the easier shutouts you will see this year, but he was sound all night and that says a lot.  You got the sense watching him that he was not going to get caught out of position, and it was going to take effort to beat him -- there weren't going to be any soft goals allowed, and that was the case.  There's not many things more frustrating than always seeing a goalie right in your shooting lane and eventually the team was just trying to blast pucks through the guy.  As the score shows, that strategy was unsuccessful.

And, finally, Ottawa's power play is now worst in the NHL, and they looked every bit of it on the night.  There will be lots more to say about this, but here is not the place for it. 


Ottawa limps into a 5-game road trip starting tomorrow against Carolina, and for this battered Sens team, there couldn't be a better way to begin the trip.