Anderson, Sens Struggle on Home Ice

SensChirp December 28, 2011 0

The first game back from the holidays certainly didn't go the way the Ottawa Senators were hoping it would.

Zack Smith got the home side on the board early but it was all Canadiens from that point on.  Craig Anderson struggled, allowing 4 goals on 7 shots and the Habs earned Randy Cunneyworth his first win as Head Coach of the Montreal Canadiens.

You often hear coaches talk about the concept of a trap game and this was certainly one of those for the Ottawa Senators.

With the Habs struggling lately, it seemed pretty clear that MacLean's group just didn't have the level of focus required to pick up what would have been an important two points.  With the exception of a couple of guys, the Sens didn't have the legs to skate with a more hungry Habs team.

While it's hard to isolate a negative on a night where the Sens struggled as a team, this was definitely a rough game for defenceman Erik Karlsson.  He didn't look nearly as sharp as he has at times this season and finished the night a -3 in just under 24 minutes of ice time.

Milan Michalek returned from a concussion and I thought he looked fairly comfortable, logging over 20 minutes and registering an assist on a second period goal by Jason Spezza.  Having Michalek back and contributing will help stabilize the Sens top six forwards.

Obviously wasn't pretty for the Sens but they won't have much time to dwell on what went wrong as the club will host their annual skills competitions tomorrow at SBP. That event kicks off at 1:00 PM tomorrow.

To close on a positive note, the reviews seem excellent for the new scoreboard which made its debut tonight.  Aside from a minor glitch where the board shut off with a minute to play, it sounded like fans really enjoyed the new addition.  Can't wait to see that thing in person!

Will have updates up on tomorrow's skills competition as they become available.