Senators Lose 3-1 to Maple Leafs

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This game screamed “PROBLEM” right from the get go.  Coming off an emotional win the night before, one that saw them briefly take the division lead, the Senators were due for a letdown on the second leg of the back-to-back.  Especially since it was against their longtime rival and a goaltender that has simply dominated them in their own barn.  Sens fans have become used to watching an inferior Toronto squad come into SBP and sneak out with a win, and tonight seemed to fit that bill.

All it took was one goal.  A goal that, on most nights, would never have even gone in.  During an attempt to clear the puck from behind the net, Erik Karlsson’s shot deflected off Tim Connolly’s stick and towards the goal.  The puck then hit Ben Bishop, who was on his way back to the crease, and trickle into the net to give the Maple Leafs the 1-0 lead.  Phil Kessel & Dion Phaneuf added power-play goals in the third period to salt away the victory.

The contest was filled with a ton of emotion.  Gonchar fought (and lost miserably to) Clarke MacArthur.  Foligno & Schenn squared off.  It got so out of control between Chris Neil & Mikhael Grabovski that both were given game misconducts.  But the Leafs frustrated the Senators much like the Canadiens did the night before – blocked shots, deflected passes & defensive play were the name of the game.  The Maple Leafs simply sat back and allowed the Senators’ mistakes to dictate who won.

So, whether it be because they were emotional spent or flustered by the fact there were more Leaf fans in the building than Sens fans, Ottawa once again fell to a less talented team. For Ottawa’s sake, let’s hope a couple of days will allow them to regain their motivation.

Paul MacLean (audio)

Erik Karlsson & Ben Bishop on the mistake that was made on the first goal.

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James Reimer, Clarke MacArthur & Mike Komisarek on the Grabovski-Neil matchup.

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James Reimer on why he’s had so much success at Scotiabank Place.

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