The Ottawa Senators scored a rare road victory on Friday night, as they defeated the Detroit Red Wings 4-2 at Little Caesars Arena. With the win, the Ottawa improves their woeful away record this season to 4-10-1.
This game was an important match-up between two Atlantic Division opponents. Entering the game, the Red Wings held a two-point lead over the Senators in the NHL standings.
Following the game, the Sens drew even with the Wings, as both teams now hold an identical record of 14-15-1 and 32 points on the season.
This was a close match by all accounts in the opening two periods. After 40 minutes of play, the game was tied 2-2, and the Red Wings edged out the Senators on the shot count, 22-19.
Chris Tierney opened the scoring at 8:19 of the first period, when he and Ryan Dzingel skated out of the Senators zone on a two-on-one after Dylan Larkin’s stick exploded on a one-timer attempt. In front of Wings goaltender Jimmy Howard, Dzingel fed Tierney a smooth pass, who hammered it in.
The Senators scored again about six minutes later when Colin White slid Thomas Chabot a perfect pass from deep in the Wings zone. The 21-year-old defenseman stepped into his shot, releasing an absolute cannon past Howard.
Detroit would tie the game in the second on a highlight reel goal. Just as the home team successfully killed off a hooking penalty, Frans Nielsen spotted Larkin stepping on to the ice from the penalty box, behind enemy lines. Nielsen instinctively connected him with a pass, putting him on a clear breakaway. Using all horsepower, Larkin motored ahead of a gassed Max Lajoie, going forehand, backhand, forehand before ripping it top shelf on Craig Anderson.
Sens Dominate Third
On many occasions this season, the young Senators have been outplayed by their opponents in the third period. This was not the case on the road against Detroit.
Ottawa saved their strongest effort for the last 20 minutes of this game, outplaying the Red Wings on their ice in the final frame. The Senators dominated the third period, doubling shots on goal against Detroit, 13-6, and scoring twice.
Mark Stone notched the game winner, when he jumped on a loose puck that squeezed through Howard. Stefan Elliott was credited with an assist, his first as a Senator. Then, Tierney finished the scoring with his second of the game, into an empty net.
Once again, Ben Harpur played a noticeable role in tonight’s game. Following a big hit on Glendening, Harpur dropped the gloves with Michael Rasmussen, who stepped up to defend his teammate. The fight was pretty much over after the first punch, which the Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ontario native landed squarely on Rasmussen’s face.
This was Harpur’s second fight of his career. His first was on Nov. 27 against Dale Weise of the Philadelphia Flyers. The 23-year-old Harpur appears to be shifting his game into a more physical role, effectively utilizing his natural height and frame advantages over most players. Big Ben stands 6’6″ and weighs in at 222 pounds.
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Then, with just over 14 minutes remaining in the game, Harpur made a monster block on a hard shot from Jonathan Ericsson. Struggling to get back to the bench, the young defenseman received a boost from his goalie, Anderson, who left the crease to give the big man a big push towards the bench. Harpur would end up being okay.
- Senators forward Bobby Ryan returned after missing 3 games due to a concussion. The 31-year-old veteran was injured against the Montreal Canadiens on Dec. 6.
- Detroit was without defenseman Mike Green entering this game. The 33-year-old is a key part of the Wings blueline with 16 points (3G, 13A) in 23 games. He is expected to miss the next three-to-five weeks due to a lower body injury suffered against the Washington Capitals on Dec. 11.
- Chabot recorded two points this game (1G, 1A) and is tied for first with the Capital’s John Carlson in the NHL scoring race amongst defenseman. In 33 games, Chabot has nine goals and 26 assists (35 points), while Carlsson has five goals and 30 assists (35 points) in 30 games.
Official 3 Stars Of The Game
- Mark Stone, Ottawa (1G, 4 Shots)
- Dylan Larkin, Detroit (1G, 4 PIMs, 8 Shots)
- Michael Rasmussen, Detroit (1A, 5 PIMS)
The Senators visit Montreal to take on the Canadiens at the Bell Centre on Saturday night. This game will be these two teams fourth and final meeting of the 2018-19 campaign, and the third in the last 12 days. The Senators trail their Atlantic Division rivals in the season series with a record of 1-2-0.
|Chris Tierney (4)||Ryan Dzingel (11)|
|Thomas Chabot (9)||Colin White (12)|
Mikkel Boedker (15)
|Luke Glendening (5)||Tyler Bertuzzi (8)|
Michael Rasmussen (5)
|Dylan Larkin (14)||Frans Nielsen (15)|
Niklas Kronwall (6)
|Mark Stone (16)||Stefan Elliott (1)|
|Chris Tierney (5)||Thomas Chabot (26)|
Ryan Dzingel (12)
Cover Photo Credit: Paul Sancya, AP
Billy Morrison covers the Ottawa Senators and the Atlantic Division for Full Press Coverage. Follow Billy on Twitter, @BillyMorrison01.