The game started off a little slow, with the Sens playing a pretty safe first period. Erik Condra was the pleasant surprise of the period, playing pretty well at both ends of the ice. He was obviously looking to make his mark early, and give Paul MacLean a reason to keep him in the line up.
It looked like fans were in for a pretty slow game, until Clarke MacArthur scored his first goal of the season after great passes from Erik Karlsson and Kyle Turris about halfway through the second period. Even more impressive than the passing play, was MacArthur's ability to make space for himself in a crowd and put the back-hand past Roberto Luongo.
MacArthur's goal would turn out to be the game winner, and the lone goal of this game, as the Sens finish off their season-opening road trip on a high note.
Sens Hero: Craig Anderson
He stopped every one of the 30 shots that he faced, and that's why Craig Anderson deserves a shout out as the hero in this game. The Sens did themselves no favours in the puck possession department tonight, and spent a lot of time in their own zone. Anderson kept his team in the game, giving them a chance to win it with only one goal.
Sens Hero: Clarke MacArthur
In a one-goal game, the lone scorer certainly deserves hero status. Clarke MacArthur put the Sens up 1-0 in the middle of the second period, and they wouldn't look back. Karlsson and Turris picked up the assists on this one, giving fans something they've been waiting all summer to see: Turris-MacArthur magic!
Sens Hero: Ryan-Zibanejad-Chiasson Line
While the Sens struggled to win the puck-possession battle tonight, the line of Bobby Ryan, Mika Zibanejad and Alex Chiasson more than made up for that at times. This line was great on the forecheck and generated a number of quality scoring chances. It seemed that any time the Sens had a rush of pressure, it was because of this line.
Ryan also made a number of solid defensive moves throughout the game, and was generally on the ball tonight. This was likely as a result of the new-found chemistry with his linemates.
Honourable Mention: Erik Condra and Patrick Wiercioch
While many fans were not happy to see Lazar and Hoffman scratched to make room for Condra, he certainly made a case for himself. Both he and Wiercioch had very good games. Neither of them were incredible, but they both deserve a mention.
Condra seemed to be all over the place (in a good way), and even drew a few penalties. Wiercioch played well positionally and made some good moves with his stick to take away opportunities from the Panthers.
Game Zero: Attendance at the BB&T Center
It was difficult to find a stand-out zero from the Sens in this game, but there certainly was a big zero in the crowd, or at least very close to a zero. The attendance at tonight's game in Sunrise, Florida was just over 7,000. It was a franchise record-low, and pretty embarrassing for both the Panthers organization, and hockey in southern Florida.
As Bob McKenzie explained, the lower attendance is due to the team no longer giving out free tickets, to keep paying ticket holders from becoming upset. So while it may look like there are less people at the games, these are just the only people willing to pay for their tickets.
B_T's donut for tonight's game: