Senators News: March 23rd; Ottawa 5 Tampa 3

-Ottawa defeated Tampa 5-3 this afternoon in a game the Sens nearly let slip away.  Ottawa lead the Lightning 4-0 after the first period, but lackadaisical play put Tampa back in the game (4-3) with just under two minutes to play.  Robin Lehner picked up the win (29 saves) while Daniel Alfredsson (2), Jakob SilfverbergGuillaume Latendresse, and Eric Gryba (his first) scored the goals.  MacLean made an interesting move sitting Daugavins in favour of a healthy David Dziurzynski (who played over 14 minutes), so scoring a goal wasn’t enough to keep the Latvian in the lineup.  Both Sergei Gonchar and Marc Methot played, so Andre Benoit was scratched (I would have much rather seen Mike Lundin in the pressbox).  Here’s the boxscore.

Scott had the scoring chances in the Boston game 12/8.

-I agree with Lyle Richardson that the Sens won’t move Ben Bishop until Craig Anderson is healthy.

Ken Warren offers up some of this thoughts and I wanted to take a look at the first in his list of ten:
1. The Sens could use some defensive help so why not Jay Bouwmeester?
This idea is so silly I assume even Warren doesn’t believe it (his third point talks about how deep Ottawa is on the blueline), but beyond whatever price Ottawa would have to pay to get him, how does he fit in next year when the team is healthy?  And why would anyone want to pay Bouwmeester 6.68 million per season?

Wayne Scanlan writes a rambling column that includes this:

Outside of Ottawa, this notion of playing for loser points is rampant, especially in a shortened season when a tiny losing streak can be fatal. On many nights, teams aren’t playing to win. They’re playing not to lose in regulation. It’s obvious to the most casual of viewers. Losses in overtime and the shootout are becoming acceptable for teams trying to gain precious consolation points, the single digit rewards for pushing a game past 60 minutes. Losses in regulation are devastating.

Scanlan implies this attitude is because of three-point games, but he doesn’t suggest a solution.  I’m assuming he thinks the old formula of two points for the win and nothing for the loss is the way the NHL should go, but for anyone who thinks that leads to more offense you are welcome to load up the NHL archives from 1995-2004; ignore the clutch and grab specifics and realise the whole point of that strategy was to prevent a loss.  Coaches will emphasis defence over offence and that approach only breaks down when officials call penalties against interference.  Personally I’d like to see a system of three-points for a regulation win, two for an OT/shootout win, and one for an OT/shootout loss, but there’s no evidence that will ever happen.

Joffrey Lupul is unhappy with the NHL’s inconsistent discipline and all I can really say to that is welcome to the club.

-Binghamton faces Hamilton (25-31-6) tonight; the Bulldogs are lead by Michael Bournival (24 points) and backstopped by Dustin Tokarski (23-12-4 2.24 .915).

This article is written by Peter Levi (@eyeonthesens)

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6 Comments

  1. That was a poor effort after the first period for sure. They need to keep playing hard or they will lose another game like this one.

  2. I think a more radical solution is in order to stop coaches from emphasizing defence over offence – how about no points for ties or losses – that way there is absolutely no value to “not losing” – of course this has a snow ball chance in Hades of being implemented

    • It’s an interesting idea, but coaches whose teams don’t have a lot of talent are going to believe they have a better chance winning 1-0 or 2-1 and if their tactics work the league will immitate them (it’s essentially how New Jersey ushered in the clutch-&-grab era). The league finds it very difficult to enforce the rules that prevent that style from working which is why there is so much more interference now as opposed to the 05-06 post-lockout season.

  3. […] Senators News: March 23rd; Ottawa 5 Tampa 3 […]

  4. We seem to agree on about every point you make.
    I especially like your proposal of 3-2-1 points. It’s a rational solution that should solve the problem.
    On the other hand, what can you expect from a league who can’t even manage to: get rid of head-shots, make visors mandatory (or at least grand-father them in), roll out no-touch icing (or at least hybrid), put electronics in pucks in order to be a 100% sure where the puck is (in the net or not), punish refs for a bad performance, be consistent at anything… and so on, and so on.

    • It’s a league that has to be dragged kicking and screaming forward. I think insurance companies will ultimately get visors enforced, but otherwise I think the list above is likely to remain unresolved for quite some time.


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