FIVE QUICK THOUGHTS
–Ice time distribution was interesting in this one as MacLean seemed less than thrilled with the performance of some of his defenceman.? Jared Cowen was down around 13 minutes while the veteran Chris Phillips ended up playing more than 27.? Obviously that’s not the ideal approach for the Head Coach but out of the three left defenceman, he?clearly?felt most comfortable with Phillips.? You would have to think he turns to Patrick Wiercioch on Monday.? Cowen seems like a good candidate to come out of the line up.
-The word “Pesky” was trending in Ottawa after tonight’s game and it’s easy to see why.? The Senators were pretty quiet through 40 minutes but seemed to find another gear in the third period and snuck up on a strong Tampa Bay Lightning team.? After a disappointing start to their season, this was an important bounce back performance by the Senators.? They should be a more confident bunch heading into Monday’s match up with the Florida Panthers.
-If not for Robin Lehner, this game probably would’ve been out of reach after two periods.? He made some big stops early and kept the Senators within striking distance.? MacLean is going to have his first difficult goaltending decision of the season to make on Monday.? Anderson was good in his start too and if you asked me before this game, I would have said he was a slam dunk to start on Monday.? But that strong outing by Lehner makes MacLean’s decision a little more difficult.? It’s going to be fun to watch these two guys push each other this season.
-Alex Chiasson has looked good in his first two games in an Ottawa uniform.? He scored an important goal in Nashville in the opener and added a highlight reel assist on Erik Karlsson’s goal tonight.? Chiasson had a great chance to end the game in overtime too.? Chiasson was the biggest piece that came back in the Jason Spezza trade and right now anyway, he looks like a real solid addition to this line up.
-Erik Karlsson is really, really good.? I feel like this may end up being a recurring thought this season but man oh man, is he ever a treat to watch when he cranks it up a notch.? Karlsson was unbelievable in the third period, tying the game and giving Ottawa some much needed momentum.? He had a chance to end the game in overtime too but hit the post behind Ben Bishop.