Sens Comeback Falls Short in a Bizarre 7-5 loss to the Panthers

Anderson showing signs of fatigue as the defense continues to struggle

Before I start recapping the game, I want to send best wishes and thoughts to the 83-year old fan in attendance who had a cardiac arrest during the first period of tonight’s game. Initially, it was announced he was revived at the game and taken to hospital but it was later revealed that he was unresponsive upon reaching the hospital; I have not seen confirmation of his status but it is not looking promising.

Prior to the game being stopped with 3:37 left in the first due to the medical emergency in the crowds, the Sens were about to go on a power play down 3-1. The period started with a good effort from the Sens that resulted in a flawless pass from Jaros to Duchene who made no mistake on a beautiful finish. It was the type of play that has us wondering why Jaros isn’t given more ice time and how much more of these passes can we see from him. Less than 3 minutes later, Jaros erased all the joy from that incredible pass with a terrible giveaway in front of Andy to give the Panthers an easy tying goal compliments of Troy Brouwer. Things only got worse from that point on as Tkachuk took a penalty where the Sens once again displayed their stellar PKing and allowed the Panthers to make it 2-1 just 18 seconds in the power play.

The Senators seemed to crumble with every passing minute and nothing was clicking for them including bench changes. A major miscommunication proved to be a costly mistake when Lajoie went for a line change but realized Jared McCann coming down with another long pass from Hunt and just like that it was 3-1. At this point, it felt like this game was just going to keep getting uglier. With 3:37 minutes left, the Sens got a power play but that didn’t matter as the game was stopped and players were asked to go back to their dressing rooms as there was a significant medical emergency occurring in the stands.

The teams came back for the second period but first had to finish the remainder of the first period that they missed. The power play was lack luster as expected and before any more scoring could happen, another disaster struck. This time it was Panthers forward Vincent Trocheck who fell awkwardly in a battle with Ryan Dzingel and his knee took a painful twist that left players on both sides absolutely terrified. It took a while to settle him down and medics from both teams attended to him until he was taken in a stretcher to the sounds of cheering fans and players. I don’t suspect this to be an injury he’ll be coming back from soo but the game had to go on especially this first period that didn’t seem to want to end safely. Unfortunately for the Sens, the period ended just as horribly as it passed when Evgenii Dadonov managed to slip one past Andy with a fraction of a second left in the period. At this point, the smart thing to do would have been to pull Andy out but this is a team coached by Guy Boucher and Guy Boucher just loves making bad decisions.

After a quick ice clean, the second period started with Panthers players still dazed from the Trochek fall. The Senators decided this game can still be won and with guys like Drake “#bathtime” Batherson in the fold, things were bound to get exciting. A mistake by Reimer and a perfect pass from Batherson to Duchene infront of an open net was exactly what the Sens needed. The game now at 4-2 seemed a bit more hopeful. Batherson wasn’t done; adding a gorgeous tip in goal to make it 4-3 on a power play he drew. It’s safe to say that Duchene has found his match made in heaven with Batherson joining the team. Things started to look good for the Sens until we were thrown back to the reality of Cody Ceci who was caught standing still FACING ANDY as he got a premier view of Haley’s first goal of the season. The second period ended as miserably as the first (minus the Batherson magic) with the Panthers adding another goal that saw Craig Anderson finally pulled out of the game but not before a tribute to Mike Hoffman that drew surprising cheers from the crowd. I will keep my opinion of Hoffman to myself as the whole situation is still awaiting concrete facts and every fan is free to have their assessment, I personally wouldn’t have left my seat if I were at the game.

The third period started with the Sens down 3 goals and McKenna in net. The Sens did not want to lose this game and they were firing on all cylinders especially Smith who got rewarded after what seemed like 100 shots by the Sens. Brady Tkachuk added another beauty that got Keith Tkachuk really excited. Down one goal, the Sens were relentless but unlucky until they got the perfect opportunity when they got back to back power plays with some brief 5 on 3 time overlapping but nothing, absolutely nothing. A game that was frustrating from the very start had to end in the worst way possible when Mike Hoffman got the dagger goal to make it 7-5 with less than 2 minutes left. A very winnable game gone to waste over many avoidable mistakes and more than a fair share of unlucky bounces in the third. Out of all the bad games the Sens have played this season, this one stings hard and I’m not sure whether it’s because of the tragedy in the stands, the brutal injury to Trocheck, the frustrating plays by the Sens defense or the fact that Hoffman had no business being the one to end this game but all I know is that this game should sting for the team just as much and I’m hopeful it’ll inspire a monstrous performance next game.

Notable Performances:

  • Drake Batherson: speed, talent, intelligence and may be a negotiating factor to keep Duchene, what more can you ask for?
  • Matt Duchene: he’s playing like he wants the whole league to know he deserves every penny of that hefty contract he’s going to demand soon.
  • Brady Tkachuk: he’s just in everyone’s face all the time, he’s brilliant in every aspect of the game and the goals are quite impressive too.
  • Thomas Chabot: he’s just so good, so good.
  • Zack Smith: he’s been buried since coming back from injury, he showed he’s capable of much more as he was moved up in the third and got rewarded with a goal./

Special Dedication:

  • Mike Foley passed away at age 61 on Saturday after a brave fight against colon cancer. I would like to extend our condolences to his family and the entire hockey community for a man who was a staple and legend to the Senators organization from the day they started. The Senators honoured Foley tonight with a touching tribute in front of his family who were in attendance tonight, it was an emotional moment for his family, the staff, the fans and players. Cancer didn’t win this battle, Mike Foley you will live forever through the great work he’s done and the many lives he’s touched./

Game Flow


Up Next:

The Sens start a 4 game road trip against the Minnesota Wild on Wednesday.

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