Sunday, April 09, 2006

Sens Game Report - BUF@OTT - 4.8.06

Hi, I’m a panic button…push me, please

The Balance in the Bank:

Final Score: Buffalo wins 6-2
Ottawa goals: Who cares? But for those keeping score at home, Eaves (19, pp) lifting a pass from Alfredsson on the powerplay, Alfredsson (41) putting it into an open right side off a nice pass from Spezza
Making Sens(e): not a single one of them
Not much Sens(e): Spezza, Alfredsson, Heatley, Fisher, Smolinski, Schaefer, Neil, Kelly, Eaves, Varada, Arnason, Vermette, Meszaros, Norton, Novak, Pothier, Schubert, Volchenkov
It was over when: Conolley scored shortly after Eaves tied it up in the first to ensure that we’d never come close again.
It was definitely over when: We allowed guys like Pyatt and McKee to pad their stats and put us down 4-2 mid second period, which has now become too big of a deficit for us to overcome.
Message in a Molson bottle: For the first time, we’ve lost three in a row. Oh yeah, we’ve also given up 20 goals in the last four games. Oh yeah, we’re still without our top three defencemen with playoffs starting in less than two weeks. And when you play as bad as we did tonight, you start worrying about how you once said that this was our year! The performance we turned in tonight, and in the past week, would be swept in the first round of the playoffs. How’s that for a description of the game?
Courtesy Boxscore: http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/boxscore?gameId=260408014

Grab a Timmy’s double-double and listen to what really happened:

Don’t push us cause we’re close to the…edge…
Alright folks, with playoffs less than two weeks out, I have decided to begin losing sleep over the state of this team – I suggest you all do the same. Gone are the excuses of injuries and fatigue, here are the questions of whether or not these guys can find the drive and determination to finally win a clutch game. Why are these games important, you ask? Because we are vying for the Eastern Conference title and home ice advantage throughout the first three rounds of the playoffs. Because no team ever wants to back into the playoffs the way we are right now. We need to enter the postseason on a nice little winning streak with the special teams clicking and the lineup healthy. Instead, we are missing too many key ingredients and the remaining pieces are skating around wondering what to do next. And while we are skating around doing nothing, Buffalo scored twice.

Toronto called - they want their lack of leadership back
Sorry, Alfie, big fan, but what are you and the boys up to right now? It was two weeks ago since we sat here and blew smoke into the orifices of these same players for a sound game plan of backchecking and timely scoring. After once taking our breath away, the Sens have changed gears and now skate around with an aimlessness that is rarely seen Hockey Country and is better suited for our friends down the 401. Illness aside, Alfie hasn’t shown the dominating captainship that led us to love earlier this season. In fact, not a single player on our team has really captured our hearts in the past stretch of games. What is troublesome about it is that nobody is taking over a game for us. Nobody acknowledges that these are important wins and that the other players are waiting for someone to step up. Nobody has taken the game into their own hands to the point of turning a loss into a clutch win. Sorry to say it, but this task starts with Alfie. Someone hold his hair back while he gets sick and then lets get back to some winning!

Ottawa Senators 2005-06 – Where are they now?
Always a great read, let’s take a look at some of the Senators players from earlier this season that have really fallen off the radar lately:
Brian Smolinski – We remember Smoke for being very inconsistent in his style of play and going back and forth between the quality of a third liner and a first liner. Smolinski is now hiding on Ottawa’s third line and doing absolutely nothing with his game.
Peter Schaefer – once known as the top boards stick handler in the conference, we remember Schaefer for being the guy that let Fisher and Havlat take the shots. Schaefs has now resolved to working the puck into the corner and then kicking it around until the opponent decides to clear it out and leave him behind.
Vaclav Varada – Varada was originally brought to Ottawa as the sandpaper for a playoff run and we remember him for being forgettable. Varada has spent the past season disappearing further into oblivion while still managing to find icetime with what was once thought to be the Eastern Conference champions.
Tyler Arnason – Arnie was brought to Ottawa at the trade deadline with the hopes of fulfilling our gap for a scoring centre on the second line. We won’t remember Arnason for much of anything and will do our best to get rid of him the first chance we get. I gave this kid the benefit of the doubt for a month and he has done nothing to earn anything other than the harsh opinion of the demanding fans of Hockey Country. Arnie is a bust.


Loblaws Express Lane – 10 items or less
1. The Pizza Line looked like it had been left in the pizza box on the counter all night and looked too crusty and gross the next day to heat up in the microwave. First game back together and besides the one goal they mustered together, they were off.
2. I hate to say it, but Fisher had a tough time tonight. This is a bad time to be losing his shot.
3. Volchenkov has taken on the role of the dude that can’t keep a puck in at the blue line on the powerplay. Not the role you want to play.
4. Emery pulled for Morrison in the second period – I hope we can give him more of a night off than 30 minutes on the bench after letting in a four-spot. Until Dom gets in a game, we still need to begin preparing for Emery in between the pipes in the first round.
5. Brad Norton needs to go away and not come back to this team ever.
6. Fisher/Smolinski/Schaefer finished the night at a modest minus-7. Not too shabby.
7. Too upset to make any Chara-ribs references. Sorry.
8. The one bright spot with the results of tonight – I predict that it will be in our hands to mathematically eliminate Toronto next weekend.
9. Hasek skated in goalie equipment today. Havlat should get clearance next Monday. Phillips has skated the last two days. Chara is ready to go as soon as he can get his hand to grip the stick. And Redden is anybody’s guess.
10. Don’t forget to check this site daily – http://www.northeasthockey.blogspot.com/.

Upcoming Games
Monday, 7:30 @ Montreal
Tuesday, 7:30 vs. Boston
Thursday, 7:30 vs. Florida
Saturday, 7:00 @ Toronto

3 comments:

pynch said...

Duffy - by stating you are too upset to make a Chara-ribs reference counts as a reference. Good job.

hockeydan said...

Unreal. I said we were playing bad 3 games ago, but compared to what I have seen as of late, makes me rethink was 'bad' truly means.

I'm not sure if we do have to push the panick button yet, but I think it's about time some oxygen masks started falling from the ceiling.

Carl Sr. said...

Panic - whatever. Obviously you havent been reading all the reports that say everyone will be healthy by the playoff's. I think the game may have passed you by.