Wanna blog? Start your own hockey blog with My HockeyBuzz. Register for free today!

Senators lose second straight at home vs. Sabres

October 25, 2023, 4:26 AM ET [42 Comments]
Sens Writer
Ottawa Senators Blogger • RSSArchiveCONTACT
Written By: Ken Hawkins (a.k.a. khawk)

Okay… so this game was more like two steps back, one step forward? The Senators played another erratic game on Tuesday night vs. the Sabres, and it cost them another chance to take advantage of early home games in their schedule.

Sabres 6 vs. Senators 4

By the time the Senators really woke up and started to more assertively take the game to the Sabres, the game was already 40 minutes old, and they were down 5-1. Many of the Sabres' goals were from odd deflections or shots through traffic, but for the most part they were the result of a persistent inability of the Senators to make clean defensive zone transitions. The fact that Norris & Batherson were on the ice for virtually every GA in this game suggests that this line in particular needs to be more responsible in terms of supporting the zone exits. They would probably also benefit from having a more dedicated two-way winger on their line, which could eventually be a good fit for a player like Ridley Greig once Shane Pinto is back in the lineup.

Regardless, if the Senators are going to make a legitimate playoff push this season, it’s not going to happen by only showing up for 1-2 periods per game. In the first period vs. DET and the 3rd period vs. BUF, the Senators held a combined 33-9 shot advantage, which led to a 4-2 goal advantage. In the four other periods vs. DET/BUF the shots were closer to even, and the Senators were outscored by a 9-2 margin. With home ice advantage. It’s just not even close to good enough. These games against DET/BUF were a chance to see where OTT was measuring up, and the answer was pretty clear.

NHL Highlights: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_CKKiqFDdkE

Three Key Stats:
- Norris-Batherson were an almost unbelievable -9 combined
- the Tarasenko-Greig-Joseph line continues to excel, scoring 2G-3A and having a +6
- you can’t win in the NHL giving up 5G on 18 shots…. Forsberg needed at least 1-2 of those

The Senators will play their next two games on the road against a pair of regular playoff contenders in the form of the NY Islanders and Pittsburgh Penguins. Despite it being relatively early in the season, I would suggest that anything less than a 1-1 split in these games could very well cost DJ Smith his job. It’s either time for the players to show they can win for this coach, or time to find a coach who can teach this group how to win at the NHL level.

What did you think of tonight’s loss vs. the Sabres? Please leave your thoughts/comments below, and thanks for reading!
Join the Discussion: » 42 Comments » Post New Comment
More from Sens Writer
» Senators lose ugly to the Panthers, drop below .500
» Senators head to Sweden hoping to regain their winning form
» The era of GM Pierre Dorion is now over in Ottawa
» Shane Pinto suspended 41 games for activities related to sports gambling
» Red Wings hand the Senators their first home ice loss of the season