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Sens Lose 5-2 to the Coyotes In A Missed Comeback Opportunity

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They have a power play goal!!

Ottawa Senators v Arizona Coyotes Photo by Norm Hall/NHLI via Getty Images

After an exciting and promising game against the Vegas Golden Knights, fans were hoping the momentum would carry over to the game tonight. Unfortunately, not only was it a demanding win by the Yotes, it was a frustrating night for Sens fans as most of the team didn’t offer much to be excited about during the game, until the third period which proved to be a little too late.

The Sens started off the game with an extremely flat period with possession mostly with the Coyotes and the Sens looking exhausted most of the period. Newcomer Vladislav Namestnikov kept on with the Sens tradition by tipping the puck in his own net to give Kyle Capobianco his first NHL career goal. You’re very welcome. The domination by the Coyotes continued and Oliver Ekman-Larsson adds another to make it 2-0; and it seemed like it was time for a Sens break. Jean Gabriel Pageau and Connor Brown tried to ignite some energy in the last 5 minutes of the period but the only thing coming out of that was a Coyotes power play.

While the Sens were able to contain the scoring powers of the Coyotes for the first half of the period, the quality of play didn’t improve much as Kessel and Co, continued their domination. The only positive to come out of the game so far was the penalty killing that was successful for 3 kills so far. The power play on the other hand was still fruitless in the one chance the Sens got in the second period. Surprisingly, Phil Kessel hadn’t scored yet but Conor Garland made it 3-0 to further sink an already drained Sens team. The period ended in the worst possible way when Connor Brown took a reckless high sticking double minor which meant the Coyotes would have a good chance in the beginning of the third period to add to the lead. Spoiler alert: they did.

The third period started as expected, the Coyotes scored their fourth before the first penalty ended and had another 2 minutes to dominate. Luckily, Namestnikov still had some drive in him and with a great shorthanded rush; he makes it 4-1 and starts the comeback campaign. The goal seemed to have energized the whole team and a power play would be their reward. In a miraculous event, Chris Tierney was able to actually score on the power play after 22 attempts this season. A POWER PLAY GOAL, YOU BETTER BELIEVE IT. The Sens continued their push and were able to generate a few more good chances while Anderson was sure to keep them in the game with some key saves. While they had a good shot, the Sens fell short and all come back hopes died with the empty net goal from Lawson Crouse. I guess it’s for the best anyways.

Game Thoughts:

  • Thomas Chabot is incredible, he seems to get smarter with every game and was one of the very few players who truly played for the first two period.
  • Anthony Duclair’s speed is mesmerizing, he still needs to work on some weaknesses but overall he’s always exciting to watch and tends to always find ways to create chances.
  • While allowing 4 goals isn’t a great look for Craig Anderson, his third period performance proved that with just a little team support; he can really do great things for the team.
  • This isn’t a good game by any means but the push by the team in the third was really promising both from a players’ perspective and a credit to DJ Smith for inspiring something in the team especially after the first two periods where the Sens had absolutely no interest in the game and continued with predictable and often easy to stop plays.
  • Mark Boroweiwcki hasn’t always been a fan favourite, but this season he seems to have really excelled with some added responsibilities and a chance to be innovative with his plays. His most impressive asset though seems to be how quickly he can heal from a bad hit every game.
  • In a night of miracles, the Sens actually out shot the Coyotes 36-27 and managed to keep the shots close even through their worst periods. This team really does have a lot of potential, they just need better focus and possibly a more structures system?
  • Chris Tierney had been a mystery to most fans since he arrived in Ottawa, nobody can quite figure out if he’s really good, a solid addition or just simply a frustrating player to watch. His performance tonight probably summarized his entire Senators career in one game where he would do something very smart one shift and then completely have a collapse the next shift. He did score the miraculous power play goal so I won’t be too harsh on him but I did enjoy Brandon’s simple Tierney assessment:

Game Flow

Heat Map

(keep in mind there’s been some problems with the NHL shot tracking this season, so this might be a little off)