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Senators Go Out With a Whimper in Dallas

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They never came out of the starting gate, and lost their 4th straight.

Ottawa Senators v Dallas Stars Photo by Glenn James/NHLI via Getty Images

If you were struggling to decide between watching coverage of the Canadian Election, or the Ottawa Senators effort against the Dallas Stars, you may have been better off choosing a punch in the neck.

The Senators put forth their weakest effort of the year on the final game of their road trip, and ultimately fell 2-1 to the Stars, who had won just two games this season. Ottawa has lost four straight contests, and have yet to win on the road this season.

The Sens, who are now 1-6-1 on the season, failed to generate much of anything. They finished the game outshot 43-20, and didn’t score until Vladislav Namestnikov found the twine with just 1:13 to go.

Dallas opened the scoring 18:58 into the first, when Radek Faksa deflected Taylor Fedun’s point shot past Anders Nilsson. Dominating in terms of shots and possession, Joe Pavelski would tap in a powerplay goal a little over midway through the second, and it would prove to be the game winner.

There really wasn’t much worth talking about in this game.

Some Thoughts:

  • The Senators faced a backup goaltender for the sixth time in eight games, as Anton Khudobin got the start for Dallas. If Ottawa is going to win at all this season, they need to take advantage of these opportunities, 20 shots through 60 minutes is just unacceptable.
  • Brady Tkachuk is a natural leader. It was evident that he was pissed off with his team’s performance, and was clearly trying to spark some energy into his teammates. Brady was a thorn in Jamie Benn’s side all night.
  • Anders Nilsson turned in another solid night. Though he’s yet to find the win column, he’s performed well in his three appearances this season. Nilly stopped 41 of 43 tonight, and if it weren’t, the Senators would have lost by a lot more.
  • Thomas Chabot hasn’t looked bad all season. That didn’t change tonight.
  • Though the Namestnikov trade seemed like a bit of a headscratcher at the time, it’s currently paying off in spades. He’s currently tied for the team lead in points (7) with Connor Brown, and is leading the team in goals with four. Namestnikov has scored in three of his first six games as a Senator.

Gameflow:

This is pretty self-explanatory. Just a pathetic performance by the Senators, as this game was all Dallas:

Heatmap:

I’m a broken record here, but just an awful effort by Ottawa. Almost no high-percentage chances to speak of. We are having issues with the NHL’s shot tracking metrics this year, but this seems pretty indicative of what happened:

Up Next:

With this road trip mercifully over, the Senators return home to take on the Detroit Red Wings, Wednesday at 7:30pmET. It’s Canadian Forces Appreciation Night, which is obviously an important one, so hopefully they put forth a better effort.