It certainly wasn't the way the Ottawa Senators wanted to close out their five game stay at Scotiabank Place.
Despite an ugly 4-0 loss at the hands of the rival Leafs, the Senators racked up 6 of a possible 10 points on the homestand and now hit the road for seven straight as the Women's World Hockey Championships takes over the rink in Kanata for the next two weeks.
The seven game, fourteen day road trip begins with a fairly light schedule this week as the Senators will only play twice, beginning with the Bruins on Tuesday night and a stop in Buffalo on Thursday.
While rest is obviously important this time of year, Head Coach Paul MacLean will likely be eager to get in a couple days of practice as the team ramps up for the stretch drive.
Ottawa still sits in fifth in the Eastern Conference, now tied with the 6th place Leafs and nine points clear of the New York Islanders, who sit just below the playoff cutoff line in the East.
After this seven game road trip, only six games remain on the schedule, including five at Scotiabank Place. Just five of the remaining 13 games are against teams currently holding playoff positions. Plenty of winnable games for the Sens down the stretch but they'll need to avoid weak efforts like the one they put in last night against the Leafs.
- The closer we get to the NHL trade deadline, which is just two days away now, the more convinced I am the Sens are willing to stand pat. With injured players expected to filter back over the next month, the team doesn't feel a desperate need to make a deal. With that said, the rumour mill still contains a few names including Derek Roy, Jaromir Jagr, Brad Boyes and Ryane Clowe. If the right deal comes along, Murray will pull the trigger but the Sens are anything but desperate.
- New entry in the ChirpEd section, again from contributor Hax, where he takes a look at the Senators contract situation moving forward. A reminder that if you'd like to have your article featured in that section, send you submission to email@example.com.