Senators lose Brännström, game against Islanders

Another slow start, another winnable game thrown away

Senators lose Brännström, game against Islanders
Photo by Prasad Panchakshari / Unsplash

Tell me if you've heard this one before: the Sens had a slow start, lost a player to injury, fought hard at the end, but couldn't dig themselves out of their self-dug hole and lost to a hot goalie. It feels like a Sens loss we've all watched so many times before.

The first period was mostly forgettable for Ottawa fans. The Sens found themselves down 17-5 in shots before they woke up, and by that point they were down 2-0. The first goal against was mostly on Rourke Chartier taking an unnecessary penalty early in the game. The Isles got another powerplay from Mark Kastelic, but the Sens killed that one off, but not to be outdone, Kastelic made another misplay to allow the Isles to score again. I hate to pile on one group of players, but the fourth line was looking bad, and for some reason DJ insisted on playing them regularly, including right after TV timeouts when everyone should be well-rested.

The second period saw the Sens tie things up, with their powerplay finally connecting again via Giroux, and then Chychrun scored a beauty off a good forecheck by the fourth line, especially Parker Kelly. Fourth line redemption?

Unfortunately, the goals came after Erik Brännström was stretchered off the ice after hitting his head on the ice. I normally assume a Cal Clutterbuck hit is dirty, but I'll admit that it was a clean hit where Branny went down awkwardly through no fault of the hitter.

The third period opened with the Sens getting the first 9 shots on goal, so it felt inevitable that the Isles would get the first goal – which they did during some loose end-to-end-to-end action, with Noah Dobson getting the goal. The Sens would ring up 47 shots on goal before it was all said and done, but it's hard to win a game when you show up 15 minutes late and have to dig yourself out of a hole. The good news was Brännström is at least responsive. Here's hoping for a speedy recovery and no lasting effects.


  • Korpisalo looked pretty dialed in tonight. For the first time in a Sens jersey, he made impressive saves but also didn't let in any softies. The Sens are outshooting their opponents virtually every game. They really just need league-average goaltending to give them a chance to win.
  • Kubalik is snake-bitten. I don't even think he looks bad, just bad luck feeding low confidence, and then low confidence making it harder to have good luck.
  • I'm about done with Kastelic and Chartier in this lineup. I didn't think Parker Kelly belonged after last season, but he has been proving me wrong. He's faster or at least has a lot more jump this year. Now put him with Smejkal and Järventie or something.
  • Putting Tkachuk on the Norris line did make that line look better, but I think the Sens still have a better shot to win if Tkachuk is with Stützle.
  • Especially after the Branny injury, you really saw Giroux and Tkachuk leading this team, firing up the bench. This team's leadership and camaraderie always impresses me.

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