As the calendar flipped from 2011 to 2012, the Ottawa Senators closed out what has to be classified as a surprising year for the organization.
Pegged by many to be a bottom feeder this year, the Sens and their never say die attitude closed out 2011 as the 8th placed team in the Eastern Conference, two points clear of the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Bobby Butler played the role of shootout hero this time as MacLean went to the struggling sniper in the extra rounds of the shootout. Butler certainly didn't look like a player that has been gripping the stick, as he made a good fake and then out waited a sprawling Enroth for the winner.
It's pretty much standard procedure for the Senators these days but once again MacLean's group found themselves trailing and found a way to battle back. Ottawa's goals came from tough guys Matt Carkner and Chris Neil.
This was a game where it would have been pretty easy for the Sens to get discouraged. Playing on back to back nights, the Senators just could not get break as time and time again they beat Enroth only to year the familiar ping of puck hitting goal post. In total, the Sens caught iron six times in this one but stuck with it and picked up the two points in the shootout.
Was really impressed with the Condra, Turris, Alfredsson trio in this one. They had a number of chances and seemed to be reading well off each other. Condra picked up assists on both Ottawa goals while Turris notched his 4th point in an Ottawa uniform.
On defence, the Sens were lead by Erik Karlsson and Filip Kuba who each logged over 30 minutes of ice time in the win. Defenceman Sergei Gonchar was injured in the warm up and could not play. The injury is not believed to be serious.
The Sens have a full day off today and will be back on the ice tomorrow morning ahead of another important game against the New Jersey Devils at Scotiabank Place.
- There was an incident in last night's Binghamton Senators game that may land Robin Lehner in some hot water. He left the crease to join an altercation at the other end of the ice and got into it with a couple of officials that were holding him back. You can see video of that here.
- Another Canada game, another goal from Mark Stone. The Sens prospect now has an incredible 7 goals in the tournament as he continues to fuel the Canadian attack. Team Canada held on for a 3-2 win over the Americans last night.
- January figures to be a grueling month for the Sens. The month includes a stretch that will see the Senators play 9 of 10 games on the road to close out the month with a ton of tough opponents lined up.
- I wanted to take the time to wish each and every one of the loyal readers of this site a very Happy New Year. It has been a year of change and uncertainty around these parts but you've all stuck with the SensChirp and continue to make this one of the best Ottawa Senators communities on the internet. A lot of hard work goes into this site but it's worth it knowing that this is a site visited by so many die hard Sens fans. Thank you and all the best in 2012!