Game Summary - Game 75: Senators vs. Hurricanes - Love? Well, Turris and Clarke
by Chet Sellers
Folks, if you don't get up for a Monday night game against the Hurricanes, you're not a hockey fan. What's on the line tonight for the Senators? Oh, I don't know, just the third of ten must-win games in a row! Will the new, no-pressure, risk-loving Senators show up again tonight? We know one of them won't - Jason Spezza is out with an "upper body" injury, and yeah, "upper body" is wack but you don't call out Spezza's back like that. Can call-up Jean-Gabriel Pageau replace him? Let's find out!
The bigger question as the first period starts, of course, is whether Ales Hemsky will be able to keep up his hot play without his soulmate, his other, his yang, Jason Spezza. I mean, I like Mika Zibanejad too, but you don't just make instant chemistry with anyone, you know. This isn't Las Vegas.
It turns out it is! Two minutes in, Hemsky carries the puck in, shows off more dangle than my first ultrasound, recovers his own rebound and feeds it back out to the point, where Patrick Wiercioch bombs a point shot off Zibanejad's foot to make it 1-0 Senators. "As long as Hemmer's happy," Jason Spezza croaks in the press box, turning his face to the wall for several minutes.
Not to be outdone by the Hemsky-Zibanejad line's instant chemistry, Kyle Turris and Clarke MacArthur try to remind Sens fans theirs is the greatest love of all, as a minute later Turris feeds a streaking MacArthur for a breakaway, only to see him stoned by Cam Ward. "It's fine, Clarkie," Turris says. "We'll get Hemsky and Zibanejad at bridge this weekend."
Of course, not a minute after that, Jeff Skinner, who probably came alone and who will NEVER find a soulmate, bounces a shot off Erik Karlsson's leg and Craig Anderson's pads to make it 1-1. Whatever, Skinner. There's a big difference between being able to score and being able to love, and one day you'll be old enough to realize that.
The rest of the period is the kind of Canadian Tire Centre razzle-dazzle you usually see from the Harlem Globetrotters as they ruin the ice for the following night's game, as the trios of Stone, MacArthur and Turris, and Hemsky, Zibanejad and Michalek show off more breakouts than a used VHS copy of Here's Howe, and more 2-on-1's than a used VHS copy of Here's Holly 7. Ah, love - for such a simple, childlike emotion, it's amazing how complicated we adults can make it.
The second period is characterized by sloppy play, penalties, and no scoring. It's almost like the Senators are worn out after twenty minutes of simpatico passing, finishing each other's scoring chances, and high-intensity snuggling. You can tell the minds are willing, but the flesh is weak - even @SenatorsDJ trying to inflame their passion by playing the Moulin Rouge soundtrack for most of the period does little good. Will things improve in the third?
No! What about overtime?
No! The highlight of overtime occurs about three minutes in, when some pushing and shoving in front of Craig Anderson leads 5-5 Nathan Gerbe to shove 6-4 Eric Gryba into the Ottawa net, which forces Clarke MacArthur to pull Gerbe off of a defenseless Gryba and pound him like a man twice his size. When the dust settles, the fracas has resulted in two minutes of 3-on-3 overtime, which is such a weird, foreign thing that the only way Paul MacLean can make sense of it is to put Chris Phillips out with Erik Karlsson. No one scores.
If you had to pick one guy to score in the shootout tonight, it would be Ales Hemsky, right? Too bad it's never that simple. Wait, it is? 2-1 Senators is your final! I was going to suggest we sign Hemsky for as much money as he wants, but at this point I think we should just coat his entire body in 24-carat gold. Craig Anderson stops all three Carolina shots, which should earn him at least a nice set of sterling silver flatware. I could be a GM.
Three in a row, just seven to go, on the wings of love. Who says these Senators can't do it? See you Wednesday!