The Senators began their game against the Colorado Avalanche by doing something they hadn't done yet this season -- taking a lead. The Senators opened the scoring when Milan Michalek tipped in an Erik Karlsson point shot on the powerplay, giving Michalek his team leading 3rd goal, and Karlsson his team leading 6th assist. Unfortunately, things went downhill quickly after that, as Colorado got goals from Milan Hejduk and Gabriel Landeskog to give the Avs a 2-1 lead. The Senators could hardly break out of their end and constantly turned over the puck, and were outshot in the first period 18-4. 18-4.
The second period was only mildly better, with the Senators getting outshot 12-4 and Colorado only scoring one goal, this time on an outrageously lucky set of bounces that somehow ended up behind Craig Anderson. This left the Senators in the exact position they were against the Minnesota Wild on Tuesday: down 3-1 going into the third period. Those Avalanche fools, playing right into the Sens' hands.
Unfortunately, the Senators ended the game also by doing something they hadn't done yet this season -- failing to score in the third period. Not only did the Sens fail to score in the third, but they also allowed 4 goals against. Yikes.
The Avs ultimately outshot the Sens 39-16.
Sens Hero: Nobody
Unfortunately, there's not a single Ottawa Senator that deserves this kind of praise tonight.
Decent Showings: Milan Michalek, Colin Greening
While the Senators as a whole were a mess, two players did manage to rise to a height above mediocrity. Michalek had the team's only goal and was simply the best Senator on the ice. He skated hard, had a number of good takeaways that saved the Senators in the defensive zone, and would have had some dangerous offensive opportunities if his linemates were able to help him out. Greening used his body well tonight, blocking two shots and having a good physical presence on the ice.
Sens Zero: Stephane Da Costa
I feel bad singling Da Costa out, because his overall play wasn't really worse than any of the other Senators. However, anytime a centre has a 0% faceoff percentage in a game, they should probably get called out. Da Costa also missed a wide open net at the end of the second period that could have kept the game (temporarily) within reach.
Sens Zero: Penalty Kill
The Avalanche scored 4 times on 6 powerplays tonight. Unacceptable.
Sens Killers: Gabriel Landeskog, Ryan O'Reilly, Joakim Lindstrom
Remember that Landeskog kid that Senators fans really wanted to draft? He had a goal and an assist on the night, and created all kinds of chances for his team. O'Reilly finished with three helpers, while Lindstrom led all players with two goals.
Sens Killer: Turnovers
I feel like I've said this too many times. The Sens constantly turned the puck over, particularly in their own zone. It led to all kinds of trouble on the breakout and to countless chances for the Avs. Also, if you want proof that the NHL's tracking of giveaways is flawed, look no further than to tonight's stat sheet -- the Sens are credited with just 6 giveaways. The Avs are listed as having 7.
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