-Ottawa lost 3-2 in a shootout last night with Robin Lehner making 33 saves in the loss. Ottawa jumped out to a 2-0 lead on goals by Latendresse and Turris, but could not hang on for the win. The game featured yet another fight where a Sen jumped to the rescue of a fallen teammate–in this case Patrick Wierioch dropped the gloves after Chris Neil was helped into the boards by Adam McQuaid (it wasn’t a particularly nasty hit, but Neil stayed down for awhile). Wiercioch‘s 0nly previous career fight was in the AHL back in December of 2010. Neil later was in the midst of a knee-on-knee hit with Chris Kelly that I think was accidental (Kelly was helped off the ice). Despite all that it wasn’t a particularly physical or nasty game. Mark Stone barely played, while Kaspars Daugavins took Peter Regin‘s spot in the lineup and played a bit more than the Dane has recently. Here’s the boxscore.
-Milan Michalek was a late scratch after suffering a setback with his knee. It would not surprise me if in the near future he has the surgery on it rather than trying to play through it.
-Scott has the scoring chances for the Ranger game 15/7.
While the Sens seem to be pushing shots to the outside more than they were last season (especially on the PK), their improvement in SV% should be attributed mostly to the goaltenders playing at an elite level. The majority of goals are scored in close around the net, and at this distance Ottawa’s goalers have been excellent as compared to a year ago. Obviously these save percentages aren’t sustainable, but with 23 games left there’s a lot less time to regress as compared to a full 82 game season. With a full and healthy defence corps you’d hope going forward next year that MacLean can get the shots against down, as teams don’t always get and shouldn’t bank on .940+ goaltending.
-Binghamton defeated Hershey 3-2 on Sunday, with Marc Cheverie picking up the win (30 saves) and Jean-Gabriel Pageau, Shane Prince, and Derek Grant scoring the goals. Binghamton trailed 2-1 with less than five minutes to go, but were able to rally and win before extra time. Here’s the boxscore.
-Kevin Forbes writes that Sens draft pick Francois Brassard (named QMJHL First Star of the Week for last week) is the best of the goaltending prospects in the Q at the moment. There’s no real analysis offered, unfortunately, other than their numbers.
-Brian Costello writes about how scouts would rank the 2012 draft if it happened today (which seems a little foolish given that it’s less than a year afterwards), with Sens pick Cody Ceci dropping out of the top-50 (along with five other first round picks).
-I’ve been amused by the constant updates that Erik Karlsson is still leading the Finnish league in scoring by a defenceman, mostly because former Bingo failure Shaun Heshka is the one closest to catching him. For those who don’t remember, Heshka was an emergency signing in 2011 after the surprise retirement of Lee Sweatt. Heshka was awful in his ten games with Binghamton and was traded to Peoria for nothing (“future considerations”). It’s a good illustration of the varied level of talent in European leagues.
This article is written by Peter Levi (@eyeonthesens)