The Ottawa Senators looked tired in their 2-1 loss to the Anaheim Ducks despite a valiant effort from their goaltender Craig Anderson who has been the team’s rock this season. After a great late game rally against the San Jose Sharks on Thursday night, the Senators looked slow and sloppy throughout most of this game and the score could have been a lot worse, if not for Anderson’s continued top game.
There were a couple of milestones in this game despite the loss. Alfredsson played his 1100th NHL career game, Chris Neil marked his 700th NHL game, all with the same team and rookie Petersson got his first NHL game after being called up from the AHL. Anaheim is sitting near the bottom of the league, but has been on a hot streak ever since they changed coaches, taking Washington’s ousted Boudreau days after he was fired. Standings aside, this was going to be a hard game for the Senators and it showed.
Anaheim was faster in charging up to the net where they like to score, and played a tight defense first system that may have been part of Boudreau’s problem in Washington. The Ducks dictated the pace of the game, with lots of energy and crease play, making life pretty tough for both goaltenders. Hiller had an adequate game, but wasn’t challenged the way that Anderson was.
As if the challenges weren’t already numerous enough for Anderson, he didn’t get much help from his team. Chris Neil potted Ottawa’s only goal of the game and came close to scoring a second late in the third, but a lot of the goals in this game were accidental. Defensive brain cramps resulted in Ottawa leaving Corey Perry wide open directly in front of Anderson for Anaheim’s first goal, but adding insult to injury, Karlsson scored off Anderson in a defensive move gone wrong. The goal was credited to Visnoksky.
Calls also didn’t go Ottawa’s way. Michalek took a penalty in the second for closing his hand on the puck in a defensive move, seconds before Bobby Ryan charged him into the net from behind. Condra also took a questionable penalty for tripping Selanne on what looked more like incidental contact.
Despite the errors and questionable calls, this was not a game that Ottawa deserved to win. They didn’t play well and there was no question that they put in a bad effort in this one. They were chasing throughout this entire game and couldn’t generate enough chances for themselves. It was a shame to see them put out such a mediocre effort this afternoon. Hopefully Ottawa can talk it over in their locker room and get some more spring in their step when they take on the LA Kings on Monday night in their continued West end road trip.
About the Author
Written by Mika Oehling
Office worker and sports nerd. Cannot play a professional sport to save my life, but love to write. Prone to rants, raves, snarky humour and caustic commentary. My team's the Ottawa Senators. Author of Armchair Hockey, a work of humourous fiction released this year and available for sale online at Chapters and Amazon.