On Tuesday night, the Arizona Coyotes chased the Ottawa Senators out of the desert with a 5-1 victory and their fourth straight win. Arizona improves their record to 6-5-1, while the Senators fall to 4-5-2 to finish the month of October. This game also concluded Ottawa’s three-game southwest American road trip, in which they went 0-2-1, obtaining just one of a possible six points.
The Coyotes jostled the Senators early in the first period, scoring three goals, including two in the first six and a half minutes of play. Alex Galchenyuk recorded his first of the season, and more significantly, his first as an Arizona Coyote. The 24-year-old was acquired this offseason from the Montreal Canadiens in exchange for Max Domi. The Coyotes also received goals from Brad Richardson, Derek Stepan, Richard Panik, and Oliver Ekman-Larsson.
After seven consecutive starts by Craig Anderson, Senators head coach Guy Boucher decided it was time to start backup goaltender Mike Condon in this game. Unfortunately for Condon and the Senators, his night ended early after he allowed three goals in the first 15 and a half minutes of action. Most regrettably, the goal that capped his night was a distant shorthanded wrist shot by Stepan from his own blue line, which Condon misplayed along the ice. At that point, Boucher had enough and ruined Anderson’s night off.
Condon has seen very limited time in the Senators crease this season. Perhaps it is not surprising when his stats are considered. The net-minder owns a 0-2-0 record, along with a horrendous 6.38 Goals Against Average, and .800 save percentage.
UPDATE: At noon on October 31, the Senators placed Condon on waivers. It is unclear at this time what his future holds, or which goalie the Senators will summon from Belleville, their AHL affiliate. Condon has an annual $2.4 million contract until July 1, 2020. Since the start of the 2017-18 season, he owns a record of 5-19-5.
One of the few bright spots in this game for the Senators was Alex Formenton. The 19-year-old rookie scored his first NHL goal, which was also the lone marker for Ottawa. Unfortunately, his goal was not without controversy. Coyotes head coach Rick Tocchet immediately ordered a coach’s challenge for goaltender interference, his second challenge of the game. The challenge failed, and Formenton’s tally was deemed a good goal.
In eight games this season, Formenton has one goal, six penalty minutes, 14 shots, 11 hits, and seven blocks. Senators general manager Pierre Dorion has a big decision to make in two games time. He must decide whether to keep him in Ottawa this year, and use one year on his entry-level contract, or send Formenton down to the London Knights of the Ontario Hockey League for another year of development.
On an undermanned Senators team that is aching for offence, Full Press Coverage predicts that the shifty speedster sticks with the Senators.
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- The Senators had a scare in the second period when an Arizona shot ran up the stick of Senators defenceman Dylan DeMelo and hit him directly in the face. Luckily, DeMelo returned after getting stiched-up.
- Thomas Chabot continues to lead the Senators in points this season with 13 (3G, 10A) in 10 games.
- Senators defenceman Mark Borowiecki served his first game of a three-game suspension handed out by the NHL on Monday after found guilty of an illegal hit against Cody Eakin of the Vegas Golden Knights last game. The rough and tough defender will return to the line-up on Sunday, November 4, when the Senators take on the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Official 3 Stars of the Game
- Alex Galchenyuk, Arizona (1G, 1A)
- Oliver Ekman-Larsson, Arizona (1G, 7 shots on goal)
- Antti Raanta, Arizona (1.00 GAA, .962 SV%)
The Senators return home to welcome their Atlantic Division rivals, the Buffalo Sabres, on Thursday, November 1. It will be the first game of a home-and-home series between the teams.
|1||Arizona||1-0||4:09||Alex Galchenyuk (1)||Unassisted|
|1||Arizona||2-0||6:33||Brad Richardson (3)||Michael Grabner (3), Nick Cousins (4)|
|1||Arizona [SHG]||3-0||15:30||Derek Stepan (2)||Alex Goligoski (3)|
|2||Ottawa||3-1||8:20||Alex Formenton (1)||Chris Wideman (2), Chris Tierney (9)|
|2||Arizona||4-1||8:42||Richard Panik (2)||Unassisted|
|3||Arizona [PPG]||5-1||10:25||Oliver Ekman-Larsson (1)||Clayton Keller (3), Alex Galchenyuk (3)|
Cover Photo Credit: Rob Schumacher/The Republic
Billy Morrison covers the Ottawa Senators and the Atlantic Division for Full Press Coverage. Follow Billy on Twitter, @BillyMorrison01.