Ottawa 5, Washington 2

The Sens jumped ahead of Washington early and survived an indifferent third period to win their fourth in a row.  Erik Karlsson lead the way again with a 3-point night and Craig Anderson made key saves to prevent a Capital comeback.

First Period
The Sens started the game strong and were rewarded with a nice goal from KarlssonNeil then took a dumb penalty and the momentum switched to Washington until Michalek deeked Wideman off a great pass from Karlsson to give Ottawa a 2-0 lead.
Second Period
The Sens enjoyed another good start, with Michalek deflecting in Ottawa’s third goal on the powerplay.  Washington continued to have penalty trouble and the Sens capitalised with Phillips scoring after Foligno and Neil created a turnover (the goal chased Vokoun).  The Sens got a little sleepy afterward, but Anderson was up for the task.  Two big hits in the period, one by Cowen and the other was Green on Greening.
Third Period
The Sens were asleep for the first half of the period, giving up an early powerplay goal to Carlsson and a facial deflection to Perreault.  After the second Washington goal the Sens picked up their play and Foligno salted it away with an empty-netter.

Here’s a look at the goals:
1. Karlsson (Spezza, Michalek)
A great pass from Spezza to find Karlsson all alone at the top of the circle who beats Vokoun the 5-hole
2. Michalek (Karlsson)
Fantastic bank-pass from behind his own net springs Michalek who dekes Wideman and beats Vokoun short side 5-hole
3. Michalek (Karlsson, Alfredsson) (pp)
Point shot bounces off Brouwer and then Michalek
4. Phillips (Foligno, Neil) (pp)
Neil and Foligno combine to turn the puck over and Phillips hammers home the puck
5. Washington, Carlsson (pp)
Phillips loses track of the back door and Carlsson slides in for a one-timer
6. Washington, Perreault
Chimera deflects the puck in off Perreault’s face
7. Foligno (Neil, Gonchar) (en)

Top-performers:
Erik  Karlsson – another dominating game for Karlsson
Milan Michalek – picked up a couple of goals and made some key defensive plays
Chris Phillips – was physical, good defensively and scored a goal
Craig Anderson – kept Washington at bay when the team was asleep

Players Who Struggled: no one specifically struggled, although tonight was the first time in awhile that Bobby Butler was invisible.

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Senators News: February 22nd

-Bryan Murray talked about the team’s playoff chances, “If we continue to play the way we are, we’re comparable to many of the good teams in this league. Are we the best team? Obviously, the standings say we’re not at this point. But we’re a competitive hockey team every night when we work hard, and we’re competitive because our back end produces a lot of points for us. This is the way the game is today, I believe. Your forwards get shut down pretty well late in important games, but if you have the back end that can produce plays and points, you have a chance.  I say all that, and we’d like to win in the playoffs. We’d like to be in the playoffs, and we’d like to win. So if something came along that makes us change our mind on a particular person, or a player that’s elsewhere now, we would do that.

-Murray also talked about trades, saying “If we could get a younger player coming in that could help us now but has a good future going forward, that’s the type of thing I much prefer to do, over trading away a young player for a veteran guy that is unrestricted and you will really have a hard time keeping here.”

The Hockey News, Sports Illustrated, and TSN have their latest power rankings out, with Ottawa 13th, 15th, and 12th.

Joy Lindsay Tweets Binghamton’s lines at practice: Hoffman-Locke-Bartlett, Klinkhammer-Da Costa-Petersson, Dziurzynski-Cannone-Downing, Grant-Hamilton-Lessard.

-Elmira won Monday night, with Corey Cowick scoring; Brian Stewart backed up and Louie Caporusso continues to be out with an injury.

-Many of you are familiar with Dwayne Klessel’s (Eklund) site Hockeybuzz.  Years ago I came across it seeking Sens news (I’m apparently one of the few people who did not go to the site because of its rumours), but it didn’t take long to find better sources of information.  Eklund and his site come to mind because Sam Page wrote a piece mocking him recently (referencing Hog‘s classic deconstruction).  I remain amazed at the amount of hostility he generates, as I didn’t think anyone took him seriously anymore.  Regardless, both articles are worth reading (for a chuckle if nothing else).