Thursday, November 19, 2009
Ottawa 6 Pittsburgh 2
Finally, the breakout game Ottawa has been waiting for.
Not for Spezza. Not for Kovalev. But who's complaining?
I don't have time to do a proper game review tonight but a few things that stood out:
- Chris Phillips getting 2 goals just over 2 minutes apart in his 800th game and trying to conceal his incredulous smile after the 2nd one went in from almost exactly the same spot as the first. Phillips is a guy who is virtually never in the spotlight, but for his 800th game, the steady veteran deservedly gets the first star.
- Matt Carkner getting the Senators back into the game with a seeing-eye shot in the 1st period. And this from a guy who can barely see out of his right eye due to it being almost swollen shut from a battle with the Leafs Colton Orr the other night. As he sat on the bench, the Pittsburgh play-by-play guy said "There's the face of a hockey player". Couldn't have said it any better.
- Chris Neil going out and hitting Penguins heavyweight Eric Godard and starting a fight just a few shifts after the Senators lost Shean Donovan to a knee injury on a hit from pest Matt Cooke. The game was a foregone conclusion at that point and Neil wasn't obliged to do anything, but he wasn't about to let Donovan's hit go unnoticed. He got bloodied in the battle but once again showed he will do anything for his teammates.
- And finally, Jonathan Cheechoo, ever the candidate to be a healthy scratch, got another goal and is managing to stay just ahead of the big hook at the most important times. With Peter Regin and Ryan Shannon just waiting to get back into the lineup, Cheechoo needs to be good on a nightly basis now and he didn't hurt himself tonight by any means.
Black Aces Senators 3 Stars
1. Chris Phillips (2 goals, shut down Crosby)
2. Mike Fisher (3 assists, continues his strong play)
3. Matt Carkner (1 goal, 21 minutes, +3, 1 good eye)