After defeating the Buffalo Sabres on Feb. 6, the Ottawa Senators were just a point shy of a playoff spot. They have since collapsed in spectacular fashion, posting a 2-6-2 record while allowing at least five goals on four separate occasions.
The most recent example of that was Tuesday’s 8-4 loss to the New York Rangers. They barely had any chance of making the playoffs even before that defeat, but at this point Senators forward Clarke MacArthur feels that they’re playing for more than just a postseason spot.
“There’s something called pride,” MacArthur told the Ottawa Citizen. “And for the people buying tickets to watch these games, and just for yourself to go home and sleep at night, you’ve got to a do a better job of emptying the tank. If you empty the tank every night, at least you can go home and have some respect.
“We have a lot of respect to earn back.”
MacArthur said the kind of blowout that happened last night is what occurs when the team doesn’t battle hard enough. He wants to see them display more “professionalism” and admitted that at this point, confidence is an issue.
The most points the Ottawa Senators can get is 97 and the second Wild Card seed Columbus Blue Jackets are on pace to record at least 91. In other words, if Ottawa wants to even make the rest of the season interesting, they need to start a lengthy winning streak when they play against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday.
Although at this point a hard fought loss would likely be seen as a step in the right direction.