There were no fighting majors and only one goal, but both teams played with a lot of intensity. After a weak showing in the first half of Game 1, the Ottawa Senators have managed to fight on equal ground with the first seed New York Rangers. It really has been evidence that you can’t count on any first round opponent to be easy in the post-lockout era.
Still, the Rangers managed to earn a 1-0 win in Ottawa and take a 2-1 series lead. Although regular season statistics should be taken with a grain of salt, it’s worth noting that the Senators were an unimpressive 20-17-4 at home this season. In fact, Ottawa actually had a better record on the road.
Let’s get the discussion started.
- The Senators have been using tough guy Zenon Konopka in unusual situations during the playoffs. He averaged just nine seconds of power-play ice time per game in the regular season, but he got 1:03 minutes of ice time with the man advantage on Saturday and another 1:18 minutes Monday.
- Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist posted his first playoff shutout since April 18, 2009.
- There were plenty of Rangers and Senators players on both sides that were willing to sacrifice their bodies to block a shot. The Rangers’ Stu Bickel’s blocked shot on Jim O’Brien’s attempt early in the second period might have prevented what would have been a critical goal.
- Brian Boyle has found the back of the net in each of the Rangers’ first three playoff games.