Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Da lil Guy on 10/17/13 at 10:59 PM ET
The Senators started their season with a difficult road trip in which they were brutally outshot by their opposition and suffered from a severe lack of discipline and an inability to hold on to leads when they had them. Somehow, though, they returned to Ottawa for tonight's home opener having managed to get 6 of a possible 12 points - largely due to good goaltending from Craig Anderson and Robin Lehner.
With the exception of getting the red carpet treatment prior to the start of the game, things weren't a lot different at home than they had been on the road.
The Sens gave up 7 powerplays, including a lengthy 5 on 3 and were outshot 42 to 22. They had the benefit of some very good goaltending - including a couple early save of the year candidates - from Anderson.
At the other end, this wasn't Marty Brodeur's night. He gave up goals early to Erik Karlsson, Bobby Ryan, and finally Zack Smith to put his team down 3-0. After the Devils climbed back into the game (making it 3-2 in the third), Brodeur couldn't keep them alive, giving up a fourth goal to Milan Michalek on a long shot that deflected up off the stick of his defenceman. The Sens added an empty netter from Jason Spezza.
While the Sens should be happy with the two points and the win in their home opener, this game wasn't exactly a coach's dream. Paul MacLean's displeasure was, at times, visible in how he played his lines - choosing to send his grinders over the boards for a powerplay in the second period in an apparent attempt to send a message to some of his skill players. Another coaching move appears to be the permanent removal of Bobby Ryan from Jason Spezza's wing. After making the switch to the Kyle Turris line during the final game of the Sens road swing, Ryan started on Turris' wing for this one. Ryan and Turris appear to be clicking, and this was the second straight game in which Turris, Ryan, and Clarke MacArthur had more time on ice than the line of Spezza, Michalek, and Cory Conacher.
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