Senators Come Out on Top in Motown
After having to defend multiple 5-on-3's, the Senators defeat the Red Wings 3-1 and are now winners of two straight.
After Ottawa came out rather deflated against the Calgary Flames on Wednesday, they were looking for a better start against a better team in The Motor City.
Senators' call-up Max McCormick banged a puck home past Jimmy Howard for his first career NHL goal. But sadly, it was waived off seconds after because of Zack Smith's incidental contact with the Wings' netminder. McCormick would have to wait for his first.
Then Mark Stone did something he seems to do a lot.
After losing the puck to Alexey Marchenko, Stone stole it right back and setup Kyle Turris right in front of the net. The Senators' leading scorer would make no mistake burying his sixth goal of the season and just like that, Ottawa was up 1-0.
Last season, it took Turris 31 games to reach six goals. This year, he's done it in just 10. He and Stone have a combined 22 points in 10 games.
Early in the second frame, the Senators saw themselves down two men as the usual suspects, Chris Neil and Zack Smith, both took minor penalties. If not for the superb penalty killing of Jean-Gabriel Pageau and couple great saves from Andrew Hammond, the game could definitely have been tied. Or worse.
Halfway through the period, Erik Karlsson fired a long range pass to Bobby Ryan to the side boards and into the Wings' end. Ryan busted by Jakub Kindl, walked around the net and threw a beautiful behind-the-back pass to Matt Puempel who stuffed home his first of the season.
In an adorable turn of events, Ryan went to fetch the puck thinking it was Puempel's first career goal. Puempel then yelled at Ryan to drop it and come celebrate. He already had one first-career-goal puck, he didn't need another.
"(Ryan) went to go get the puck and I didn't want people to think it was my first (career goal)," said Puempel in between periods during an interview with Gord Miller. "Bobby's obviously a nice guy, going to get the puck but I think he was on the ice for the goal last year, so it shows how much he pays attention to me."
To make things clear, Puempel's last comment about Ryan was meant to be sarcastic.
With just five minutes left in the second, the Senators were looking great, driving the possession and pressuring the Red Wings in their zone. Then a familiar blunder occurred.
After Cody Ceci and, you guessed it, Zack Smith took a couple of minor penalties, Detroit was off to a 5-on-3 power play one again. This time, the Senators wouldn't be so lucky.
A Teemu Pulkkinen slap shot redirected off of Jared Cowen and right on to the stick of Henrik Zetterberg, who fired it into a wide open cage.
Ottawa would kill off the remaining 5-on-4 power play, but nonetheless, the home team was within one.
It looked like Dave Cameron had seen enough of Smith's antics by the third period.
Zack Smith has been benched.— MichAAel (@gosensgo101) October 31, 2015
The final frame would be filled with chances for both sides, but it was the Senators who tallied the only goal.
As he does, Bobby Ryan would add the empty netter and the Senators successfully staved off a late Detroit comeback.
Sens Hero: Andrew Hamond
After an average outing in his first game of the season against the New Jersey Devils which saw the Senators losing 5-4 in a shootout, Andrew Hammond had a much better showing in Motown. That's all Ottawa will ask of the Hamburglar this season. They won't have to rely on him like they did with Craig Anderson and Robin Lehner's injuries last year, but if Hammond can come in once every six or seven games and provide some solid goaltending, everyone should be more than satisfied.
Sens Hero: Kyle Turris
What a season Kyle Turris is having. It seems like it wasn't long ago that the critics were wondering if he was even a top-six centre, let alone a No.1. He's definitely out of Jason Spezza's shadow now. Turris and linemate Mark Stone are tearing the league apart and look dominant each and every night. Even without Mike Hoffman.
Sens Zero: Zack Smith
After a good performance against the Calgary Flames at home on Wednesday where he had a beautiful goal, sniping one past the glove of Jonas Hiller, Zack Smith had quite the opposite game against Detroit. Being the second penalty in a row, causing the Senators to go down on a 5-on-3 penalty kill twice, Cameron made a decision to bench Smith, and rightfully so. The 27-year-old didn't see a single second of ice time in the third frame.