Much like they have all season, the Ottawa Senators fell behind early. And as they have managed to do on a few occasions, they came back and won. This was Ottawa's 12th win of the season and in seven of those 12 victories the Senators allowed the first goal.
Ottawa fell behind 1-0 for the fifth consecutive game when Michael Raffl scored his first career NHL goal thanks to Chris Phillips making a mess of defending. The lead didn't last long with superstar winger Clarke MacArthur continuing his rich vein of form (and fortunate luck) when a bobbled puck found his way to him on a breakaway. MacArthur of course scored and the game was tied at 1-1. The Flyers only had five shots in the period but did managed to have a couple of dangerous chances.
The Senators took their first lead since late in the second period against Florida on Patrick Wiercioch's power play goal. Wiercioch was setup on a beautiful pass by Bobby Ryan, it was great to watch. Just like the Flyers though, the Senators wouldn't hold the lead for long. Just 2:13 later, the Flyers tied the game on a power play goal of their own on a shot that was blocked but Craig Anderson was caught frozen on his knees and could not react to the second attempt. Less than two minutes later, the Senators were behind when Luke Schenn's point shot eluded Anderson again. At this point, things were not looking good as the Senators seemed headed for another defeat.
Never fear, Clarke's here. His fortunate luck continued on Bobby Ryan's shot that rebounded off MacArthur's skate and into the net. Six minutes later Ottawa regained the lead on Kyle Turris' unassisted goal that was unofficially assisted by power forward Jared Cowen driving the net. Like had been the case all night, no team could hold the lead. Kimmo Timonen's floating point shot from the point some how beat Anderson again 2:37 later and the game was tied yet again. Anderson did manage to make a couple of big saves later in the period to take the game into overtime.
The overtime was rather uneventful and after both teams missed their first two shootout attempts, Jason Spezza scored Ottawa's first shootout goal of the season on the 13th attempt. The Flyers missed on their last attempt and Ottawa won its first shootout game of the year.
Sens hero: Clarke MacArthur
Tied the game twice, and the Senators had 67% of the 5-on-5 shot attempts with him on the ice. He's been a revelation all season. Can you imagine this team if Bryan Murray got his first choice and had signed David Clarkson instead?
Sens hero: Jason Spezza
Spezza has struggled defensively most of the season but he has still managed to put up points. He added another two assists and scored the shootout winner.
Sens zero: Craig Anderson
While he finally ended his streak of seven consecutive shootout goals, Anderson allowed four goals on 29 shots and really didn't play any of the last three goals well. His 89.5 save % is now 43rd out of 50 qualified goaltenders in the NHL.
Dishonourable mention: Chris Phillips
Phillips was really struggling tonight and he's had a few rough games recently. He's been decent this season, but some of the times the way he gets beat is just comical.
- Sens are 7-2-4 when Matt Kassian plays and 5-12-1 when he doesn't. ALL YOU HATERS DON'T HAVE A JACK ADAMS LIKE MACLEAN SO TRUSTACHE!
- The Senators are now six points back of the Maple Leafs for the last playoff spot. Ottawa plays back-to-back games against Buffalo while Toronto plays Los Angeles and St. Louis. Things could be mighty close by the weekend.
- Ottawa continues to win the shot battle, outshooting their opponents for the seventh straight game. They are third in the NHL in shots per game, fourth last in shots allowed and the shot differential is down to one per game.
- Erik Karlsson had a relatively quite game. Well as quiet as 29 minutes of mistake free hockey and one assist can be.
- The Senators have five players on pace for 60+ points. Karlsson is on pace for 77, Bobby Ryan is on pace for 74, Jason Spezza is on pace for 73 , MacArthur on pace for 68 and Turris on pace for 61.
Maybe coming soon.