Senators News: October 16th

The Ottawa Sun’s Don Brennan writes about Erik Karlsson (link), with the blueliner saying, “I know I’m not a bad defensive player. As long as I know I’m fine back there, people can write whatever they want about me, and tell me I can only play offence or whatever. It doesn’t really bother me at all.”

-Brennan also wrote about tonight’s game (link), which includes comments by Daniel Alfredsson: “There was a lot of great things, the way we limited their chances the last two periods was outstanding. Overall it was a great game, and frustrating when we don’t put the puck in the net.  I had three or four great chances, and I can’t get it up. That’s the difference really. Too much Swedish, not enough finish.”

-In his post-game interview (link) Paul MacLean thought his team deserved a better fate.  He was happy with Spezza‘s, Regin‘s, and Konopka‘s line (Da Costa‘s goes unmentioned) and with the work the team did defensively after Gonchar‘s injury.

-Here’s The Silver Seven‘s Mark Parisi’s take on last night’s game (link).

-ESPN takes a look at fantasy rankings after the first week and in Victoria Matiash’s piece on blueliners (link) she includes this preamble, “Fans across North America — with the possible exception of those cheering on the Ottawa Senators — can still legitimately dream about their own beloved club winning it all before the start of next summer.”  Erik Karlsson is 37th on her list based on how she projects him (Gonchar is 20th, Kuba tied for 75th).  Tim Kavanagh (link) has Craig Anderson falling in his list of goaltenders, while Sean Allen (link) has Daniel Alfredsson on his powerplay unit (the only Ottawa forward ranked is Jason Spezza at 61st).

-Joy Lindsay has her post-game comments for Binghamton up (link).  Kurt Kleinendorst said, “I don’t think we actually played that great tonight. First period, we came out pretty good, but then we were pretty bad until start of second. We talked in the room that we can’t play this way. We came out in second and played a little better. In third, we started good again, middle was a little sloppy then. They’re a good team. They were outworking us quiet a bit in our end. It was a really tough game to play against them. But somehow, we got it done. That’s the most important thing.” And “When you win a game, it just builds mentality to come out next game, you actually believe you will win. Especially coming back from losing 4-3, 3-2. It just builds something for next game. You know you have that extra mile to go in the third period wherever you need to score a goal, and have confidence in everything. When you win, it helps. We didn’t play great, but we got it done, which shows team character. And goalies played well. Robin played awesome. All the D were blocking shots, probably like 15 blocked shots today. That shows character.”

Ottawa 1, Washington 2; Binghamton 5, Wilkes-Barre 4 (OT)

The Ottawa Senators lost a game they could have won tonight.  They played hard and they played well, but couldn’t complete the comeback against Washington.  The officiating was awful in the game–soft calls and no calls.  The no-goal call against Ottawa was a joke, but I don’t blame it for the loss.  Ottawa really outplayed the capitals, with much better defensive support throughout.  For the box score go here link.  A quick look at the goals:
1. Washington, Backstrom
The cross-crease pass is missed by Phillips and Zack Smith isn’t able to come down far enough to interfere with it
2. Washington, Johansson
A wrap-around goal Auld should have had
3. Regin (Foligno, Rundblad)
A great shift by the forward line; Rundblad gets his shot through, Foligno and Neil provide the net presence, and Regin makes a great shot

My thoughts on the top performers:
Daniel Alfredsson – his best game of the season, leading the team in shots and scoring chances
Milan Michalek – another strong game where he could have had a couple of goals

Players who struggled:
Mika Zibanejad – his confidence appears to be shot and he’s been largely invisible
Stephane Da Costa – no flashes of brilliance tonight

Finally, a puzzler: Regin scores the team’s only goal but is 8th in forward ice time?

In Binghamton, the Senators won their first game of the season 5-4 in overtime.  The heroics tonight belonged to Mark Parrish who lead the team with a four-point night (for the box score link).  I did not see the game so I’m reliant on reports, but Robin Lehner got the win.  Corey Locke, Mike Hoffman, and Jim O’Brien had multi-point games.  Both David Dziurzynski and Andre Petersson were inserted into the lineup.  For Joy Lindsay’s game blog go here link.

In Elmira, the Jackals won 3-1 over Trenton.  Downing picked up an assist while Gratchev, Godfrey, and Caporusso were pointless (Stewart did not start).