Tonight's game at Madison Square Gardens marked the return of the two longest-serving Senators, Chris Phillips and Chris Neil, to the Ottawa lineup. Not much happened in the first period. Ottawa and New York each had one powerplay but failed to break through. The most notable play of the period was Erik Karlsson mistiming a hip check on JT Miller as the Ranger forward came skating into the Ottawa zone. The result was Karlsson flying into the side boards, but the Sens captain seemed no worse for wear. Ottawa's second line of Mika Zibanejad, Bobby Ryan, and Mike Hoffman seemed the most dangerous for the Sens, while Ottawa's forth line was hemmed in their own zone a bit. The period ended with the Rangers still on the powerplay and the score tied at zero. Shots 9-7 in favour of the Rangers.
Ottawa began the second period by killing the last 30 seconds of the Rangers powerplay, ending with a decent scoring chance for Erik Condra and Mike Hoffman that was broken up by the New York defense. Ottawa continued to pressure New York for the first few minutes of the period, with Mark Stone generate a few scoring chances. Marc Methot's unlucky, injury-plagued season continued when a Ranger deflected a puck at point blank range, hitting Methot in the mouth. The defenseman had to head to the dressing room for repairs. After a nice scoring chance for Bobby Ryan, New York got on the board on a Kevin Hayes goal.
Ottawa answered four minutes later when Kyle Turris and Mark Stone went to work in the New York end. Turris made a nice move to set Condra up for a chance but the winger was predictably denied. When Rangers blueliner Ryan McDonough wiped out and took a teammate with him, Mark Stone collected the puck from behind the net, passed it to Turris who was calling for it. Rather than shoot, Turris sent the puck to Karlsson who wristed the equalizer past Henrik Lundqvist. A minute later, Turris drew a penalty when he took a high-stick from Lee Stempniak. It took Ottawa just 11 seconds to capitalize on the advantage. Milan Michalek put a rebound from an Alex Chiasson shot five-hole on Lundqvist. Penalties to David Legwand and Eric Gryba resulted in a late, extended 5-on-3 for the Rangers at the end of the period. Some great work by Methot, Cowen, and Pageau resulted in the Sens heading to the second intermission still up by one. Second period shots 17-14 in favour of the Rangers.
Ottawa had a couple nice chances to start the third period, but New York equalized early in the frame when the Ceci-Cowen pairing was overmatched by on a 2-on-2 by Chris Kreider and Marc Staal. The teams traded chances for the rest of the period, and while both had chances to take the lead, a late flurry by the Rangers in which they hit the post in the dying seconds of the frame, was the most dangerous. The third period ended tied at two, shots 13-8 in favour of the Senators. Overtime was an exciting affair, especially for the Senators who had a few good chances to win it. Bobby Ryan, who had a decent game, was his most noticeably during 4-on-4 play, and had the best chance for the Senators. Ultimately it was not meant to be, as Carl Hagelin tipped a shot passed Anderson to give the Rangers the 3-2 victory. It was a good effort from the Sens against one of the East's best teams, Ottawa just fell short. Shots 35-35.
Sens Hero: Mark Stone
Stone had a good night, generating several scoring chances and recording three shots on goal. Hewas a big part of Ottawa's first goal and got an assist for his efforts.
Sens Hero: Erik Condra
Another good night from a player who saw a lot of the press box under Paul MacLean. Because of lineup changes Condra found himself with David Legwand and Chris Neil tonight but the change didn't seem to bother him. Strong on the penalty kill, he also generated several offensive chances and led the team with six shots on goal.
Sens Hero: Erik Karlsson
Another great game from the captain. He scored Ottawa's first goal, generated a few chances with his four shots on goal, and made several fine defensive plays, including to stops against the speedy Kreider.
Honourable Mentions: Jean-Gabriel Pageau and Milan Michalek
After looking washed-up for most of the season, Michalek looks rejuvenated with Pageau. Michalek scored Ottawa's second goal on the powerplay and Pageau was great on the penalty kill and played more than 17 minutes tonight.
Sens Killer: Chris Kreider
The most dangerous Ranger on the ice tonight, Kreider scored the tying goal early in the third period and victimized Cowen on several chances will firing seven shots at the net.
Shot chart via ESPN:
Game Flow via Natural Stat Trick:
Highlights via NHL.com: