Senators beat Canadiens 2-1; take over Northeast Division lead
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For much of the game, it looked like the Ottawa Senators would walk away with nothing from this highly frustrating contest. The Montreal Canadiens have played the Sens hard this season and the second of two consecutive games against the Habs was shaping up just like the first.
Just like Wednesday night, Montreal got on the board first when Tomas Plekanec scored a shorthanded goal in the first period. Matt Gilroy failed to push the rushing Plekanec to the outside and he snapped a puck over Ben Bishop's shoulder. Two early fights bogged down the game and began the march to the penalty box for both teams. Plekanec's shorthanded tally was a harbinger of things to come: the Sens power play was an exercise in futility tonight, as the Canadiens defenseman Josh Gorges and goalie Carey Price kept the Sens at bay. The Senators kept up the pressure in the second, dominating the game but failing to find the back of the net.
While the powerplay was continually thwarted in the third, Colin Greening tied the game midway through the period. Greening went to the net on a grinding shift by the Smith line and was rewarded with a goal by backhanding a rebound into the net. The rest of regulation saw more penalties taken but solved nothing and for a second straight game, overtime was needed.
Midway through overtime, Filip Kuba snapped home the winner on a slick feed from Daniel Alfredsson for the 2-1 win. It wasn't pretty, it was incredibly frustrating, but the Senators made sure to get two points tonight and take over the Northeast Division lead from the Boston Bruins. Shots were 33-14 for Ottawa.
Continue for heroes and zeros.
Sens Hero: Filip Kuba
Not his best game overall, but if you score the OT winner, you get to be a hero. Which would have been more surprising at the start of the year: Ottawa takes over the division lead from the defending champs this late in the season or that Filip Kuba would be the player to score the goal that makes it happen?
Honourable mention: Colin Greening
Engaged physically with Subban all night, Greening had a fight and scored the vital tying goal in the third period after putting in some good grinding shifts on Smith's wing.
Sens Zero: the powerplay.
0 for 9. Terrible. This is the wrong time of year for the power play to go cold.
Sens Killer: Josh Gorges
One of the reasons the Senators could not break through on the powerplay was that Gorges was a wall in front of the Montreal net all game. Montreal had 25 blocked shots, Gorges had 10 of them.