Game Summary - Game 67: Avs @ Sens AKA Now is the Spring of Our Discontent

By Luke Peristy

Coming out of the Olympic break, the Ottawa Senators needed to put together a lot of wins in order to cement their place in The Eastern Conference Race for Eighth Place. In response, they were blown out at home by Detroit, lost listlessly to two of the worst teams in the Western Conference, went down 3-0 at home before scoring 3 goals in the 3rd period and losing in overtime, and went ahead 4-1 on the road before giving up 3 goals in the 3rd period and losing in overtime. Not satisfied with merely slipping into irrelevance like so many other NHL teams, the Senators have really been exploring the space outside the playoffs, coming up with new and inventive ways to fail to win. What would they come up with in this second-game-of-the-back-to-back afternoonish game? Let's find out!

1st Period

20:00 - Robin Lehner gets the start for the Ottawa less than 24 hours after giving up 4 goals in under 5 minutes at the end of last night's game. This gives Lehner a chance to immediately get back on the proverbial horse, only it's more like if Lehner had been pushed off the horse by the referees instead of just falling.

18:36 - Ottawa comes out with purpose and Mika Zibanejad draws an early penalty and the NHL's worst home powerplay goes to work. The Senators look oddly competent with the man advantage, but fail to score, thus ensuring that the Sportsnet panel doesn't have to worry about changing its arbitrary narrative.

14:59 - Bobby Ryan has a clear shot on Varlamov after taking a beauty feed from Clarke MacArthur, but shoots just wide. Jakob Silfverberg would have missed the net much, much worse, there.

7:17 - Both teams currently have only 2 shots on goal. You might think this means that the game hasn't been all that exciting, but to be fair, you'd be correct.

5:00 - In the span of one minute, both Bobby Ryan and Ales Hemsky get chances to open the scoring before shooting the puck just wide. That's right, Ottawa nearly got a shot on goal. Twice! More on this story as it develops...

2:25 - Dean Brown, already working through his list of banter material, announces that Notre Dame grad, Erik Condra, is both Irish and describes St. Patrick's Day as "his favourite holiday". This explains why Sens fans are likely to say "Oh...Condra" whenever he gets a scoring chance.

Random Fact About the 1st Period: If you watch the first period with the sound off while dubbing Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon album over top, it does not improve the entertainment value at all.

2nd Period

18:54 - Proven Ottawa Senators Fastest Skater, Milan Michalek, gets a semi-break which is defended by the Avalanche by engaging in some "light interference". This game's refs also worked the Montreal game last night, and as we know, letting them play is kinda their thing.

12:48 - Cody Ceci gets robbed by Varlamov's glove. Somebody's gotta tell that kid that he doesn't have to play like Karlsson all the time.

9:00 - Shots in the 2nd period are 14 - 1 for Ottawa. 14 - 1 is also the record the Senators need in their remaining games in order to make the playoffs. CONSPIRACY!

6:37 - A scramble in front of Robin Lehner leads to a timely whistle. I assume all bought their wives and girlfriends Valentine's Day chocolates on February 15th, as well.

4:11 - Let's play Crappy Sens Season Mad Libs!

Embattled Player: Chris Phillips

Low-Percentage Hockey Play: Wrap-around

Former Senator: Andre Benoit

Odd Man Rush: 3-on-2

A Low Number of Shots: 11

Your Mad Lib: A failed Chris Phillips wrap-around leads to former Senator, Andre Benoit, scoring on a 3-on-2. This was only Colorado's 11th shot of the game. 1 - 0 Avalanche 

Random Fact About the 2nd Period: As Chris Phillips set up shop behind the Colorado net, Denis Potvin remarked on how the play resembled something Wayne Gretzky would do. As the play nearly immediately led to a goal, I guess you could say he had a point.

3rd Period

19:47 - Dean Brown helpfully announces that the Avalanche are 31-0-2 when leading after two periods. Still though, if there's one thing that's not a sure thing under any circumstances, it's your 2013-2014 Ottawa Senators.

16:50 - Nick Holden gets an easy powerplay goal just by standing at the side of the Ottawa net and waiting for the puck to come to him. 2 - 0 Avalanche

Holden Power Rankings

1 - Holden Caulfield

2 - Holden the vehicle manufacturer

3 - Nick Holden (What a phony!)

10:25 - Ales Hemsky and Erik Karlsson play a little give-and-go, but Hemsky misses the net on his shot. This play reminds me of The Bachelor in that two people display chemistry that ultimately leads to nothing, but I'm still going to watch next season.

6:05 - Sportsnet begins to experience persistent technical issues wherein there is a recurring blackout that lasts for several seconds. Other Twitter users also experience this which is how I know it's not caused by my own rage and disappointment.

2:58 - John Mitchell is left alone at the side of the Ottawa net and makes it 3 - 0 Avalanche. Colorado has shown no fear of The Lehner in this game as they stand near his crease at will. Expect Lehner to re-establish dominance of his domain with a swift slash or decapitation in the coming games.

6.0 - Mika Zibanejad ends Varlamov's shutout bid and probably ruins someone's fantasy hockey season in the process. Are you that guy who needed a Varlamov shutout to make your league's playoffs? Leave a comment! 3 - 1 Avalanche

Ottawa loses 3 - 1

The Wisdom

Am I already looking towards next season?

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