Of course the big topic of discussion since Game Five has been Chris Neil ’s impact on the game, the team and the series. While that discussion goes on and on and on (and on and on) with no end or consensus in sight, there are a few other things to take from that game that we might actually be able to agree on.
1. More people scoring
Going in to Saturday's game, Jean-Gabriel Pageau had a full half of the Senators goals in round two. Game five had five different scorers, including the team's three top regular season goal scorers of Kyle Turris, Mike Hoffman and Mark Stone. Derick Brassard and Tom Pyatt rounded the scoring out, potting their first goals of the round along with Hoffman.
2. Mark Stone looked like Mark Stone
Well, mostly - maybe 95% Mark Stone? That is still a lot closer to what we expect from him than what we've been seeing since February. For the player who is arguably the team's best forward, a return to form is a sight for sore eyes.
3. Rock'em Sock'em Turris
You could probably say this really started in game four, but either way Kyle Turris is playing with more of an edge. He layed out a team leading NINE hits in game five, more than double the second most. On top of that, he dominated the faceoff circle winning 15 of 23 draws, had nine individual shot attempts, lead the forwards in ice time, held a positive on-ice share of the shot attempts while having one of the lowest offensive zone faceoff percentages, and - oh yeah - scored the OT goal to wrap things up because apparently he had somewhere else to be. His best game of the year?
4. Getting to the net
In games three and four, the Senators had net presence problems. They were barely able to get near the Rangers blue paint, and while they were getting plenty of shots they never really looked dangerous. But just look at where the goals came from in game five.
Look at that, four of the five coming from right on Lundqvist's front step. There were a few more scrums in front of Hank where the puck could have ended up in the net with just a little different bounce, too. Worth noting that's where most of the game two goals came from too, though not quite THAT close in.
5. Special Teams
The Senators actually had two good looking power plays last game! They had solid pressure and dangerous looking chances. This after not getting a single attempt at all on the PP in game four, maybe one dangerous(ish) looking chance in game three, and a pair of short handed goals against in game two. The penalty kill was also looking pretty good - the Senators had as many dangerous looking chances during Rangers power plays than the Rangers did and kept the Rags PP shot attempt rate the lowest it's been all series.