It was military appreciation night at Canadian Tire Centre on Tuesday, when the Ottawa Senators offence detonated for seven goals en route to defeating the New Jersey Devils, 7-3.
After the game, Senators head coach Guy Boucher noted his team’s effort was an extension from Sunday’s game against the Eastern Conference-leading Tampa Bay Lightning. “I thought we played a terrific game last game, and we continued what we were doing last game”, said Boucher. The coach also sees constant progression as the team gets better every game. “By a small score or a big score, I really like the push on the next game, on the next moment, the next practice, and the attitude that the players are displaying. And it’s just another display today of guys who enjoy being together, sticking together, paying the price together, and I thought tonight was a good 60-minute display of that”.
With the win, the Senators improve their record to 6-6-3 and 15 points, while the Devils drop to 6-6-1 and remain at 13 points.
One day before this game, an embarrassing video emerged showing seven players on the team laughing about their poor penalty kill and mocking one of their assistant coaches. The team learned about the video’s existence before it went viral, and had already dealt with the matter internally. In statements that followed from the players involved and the coach, the team stressed they were apologetic and stood united.
Those words matched their actions on Tuesday night, as the Senators blitzed the Devils offensively and played a fulsome game for the entire 60 minutes. Of relevance, the Senators were perfect on their penalty kill, shutting down the Devils power play, which went 0-2.
The Senators’ full response included six unanswered goals, which chased Devils starting goaltender Cory Schneider. He was replaced by backup Keith Kinkaid. Regardless of Kinkaid’s big pad-save efforts, Ottawa’s commanding lead held, and Magnus Paajarvi added an empty netter. In a rare instance this season, the Sens outshot their opponents by a count of 42-39.
Senators Mark Stone had an outstanding night. He took home the game’s first star after putting up five points, including two goals, three assists, seven shots on goal, and the game-winner. Stone was a man on a mission tonight, getting involved in many offensive plays, creating scoring opportunities, and demonstrating a veteran leadership presence in a must-win game for the Senators. He also achieved a special career milestone, scoring his 100th NHL goal.
Another notable performance came from Senators defenseman Thomas Chabot. The 21-year old continued his tremendous start to the season, adding three points on the night. This included a goal, two assists, and a jaw-dropping nine shots on goal from the blue line. Chabot’s Tuesday night performance vaulted him into the lead as the NHL’s most productive defenseman. He leads the NHL with 20 points (4G, 16A) in 15 games, two points ahead of Toronto Maple Leafs Morgan Rielly, who has 18 points (6G, 12A) in 15 games.
Not only is Chabot leading all NHL defensemen, he is now on the radar for the overall NHL scoring race. Chabot is tied for fourth in league scoring, along with the likes of Evgeni Malkin and Patrice Bergeron. He is ahead of Sidney Crosby, Alex Ovechkin, and Patrick Kane, and only behind Connor McDavid, Nathan MacKinnon, and Mikko Rantanen.
Military Appreciation Night
This game was the 15th annual military appreciation night, which honors the men, women, and families of the Canadian Armed Forces. Over 3,000 Canadian Armed Forces were in attendance, and the Senators wore military-style jerseys in their pre-game warmup. Since this program started in 2004, the Sens have hosted 33,000 Canadian Armed Forces at their games.
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Senators CEO, owner, and governor Eugene Melnyk said, “Canada is at its best when it protects, promotes and preserves our freedoms at home and around the world. Nobody does this with greater distinction than the Canadian Forces. Everywhere they go, they exhibit a sense of character, commitment, and cooperation that do us proud. These are the values that have inspired the rebuild of the Ottawa Senators. We are proud to continue the tradition we started here, to honor the leadership and service of our men and women in uniform.”
Following the game, Boucher said, “I thought it was great having the armed forces here…for all the sacrifices they do for us, I think it was great to have them around and to be able to give back with a win. It was a great atmosphere for us”.
- Mark Borowiecki was out of the lineup after suffering an upper-body injury.
- Considering the recent debacle involving Uber, fans were surprised to see the Senators running an Uber ad at the game on the jumbotron and along the upper and middle decks of the rink. It will be interesting to see whether this ad continues, as the Senators consider possible legal action against the company.
Official 3 Stars of the Game
- Mark Stone, Ottawa (2G, 3A, 7 Shots)
- Colin White, Ottawa (2G)
- Thomas Chabot, Ottawa (1G, 2A, 9 Shots)
The Ottawa Senators welcome the Vegas Golden Knights to Canadian Tire Centre on Thursday, November 8. This will be the second of two games between the clubs this season. Vegas won the first match-up 4-3 in overtime.
|1||New Jersey||1-0||3:14||Taylor Hall (3)||Nico Hischier (8), Andy Greene (3)|
|1||New Jersey||2-0||11:20||Kyle Palmieri (10)||Ben Lovejoy (3), Nico Hischier (9)|
|1||Ottawa||2-1||12:05||Thomas Chabot (4)||Bobby Ryan (5), Chris Tierney (11)|
|1||Ottawa||2-2||12:58||Mark Stone (5)||Matt Duchene (9), Ryan Dzingel (5)|
|2||Ottawa||2-3||2:27||Colin White (4)||Mark Stone (10), Nick Paul (1)|
|2||Ottawa||2-4||7:35||Mark Stone (6)||Matt Duchene (10), Thomas Chabot (15)|
|2||Ottawa||2-5||17:44||Colin White (5)||Mark Stone (11), Thomas Chabot (16)|
|3||Ottawa||2-6||10:11||Ryan Dzingel (6)||Mark Stone (12)|
|3||New Jersey||3-6||14:13||Travis Zajac (5)||Blake Coleman (1), Sami Vatanen (6)|
|3||Ottawa||3-7||18:01||Magnus Paajarvi (1)||Chris Tierney (12), Matt Duchene (11)|
Cover Photo Credit: Fred Chartrand/The Canadian Press
Billy Morrison covers the Ottawa Senators and the Atlantic Division for Full Press Coverage. Follow Billy on Twitter, @BillyMorrison01.