HASEK SHUTS OUT ISLANDERS
By Kerry Gwydir and Corey Witt
Dominik Hasek made 28 saves as the Senators blanked the Islanders 6-0 on Saturday night in Ottawa. Daniel Alfredsson netted a pair of goals for the Sens and Ottawa netted three powerplay goals with a short handed tally in their winning effort.
After Thursday's 5-1 loss to Pittsburgh on Coliseum ice, Rick DiPietro got the nod again between the Islander's pipes vs. Ottawa's Dominik Hasek. DiPietro's teammates didn't get off to the best start when they were down two-men for 1:15 less than three minutes into the contest. The Isles dodged the high-powered Ottawa offense on that powerplay, but the sequence did have its chaotic moments.
Three brilliant stops early on the 5-on-3 by DiPietro kept the hosts off the board as Jason Spezza (twice) and another from the stick of Alfredsson on the doorstep tested the Isle's penalty killing unit. Ottawa defenseman Brian Pothier, just prior to the powerplay ending, beat the Islander keeper through a screen but was denied by the left post.
Steve Stirling's team would get their own two-man advantage for 29 ticks nine minutes in, but it turned into the hosts favor when Alfredsson tallied a shorthanded breakaway tally at the 9:22 mark. The play developed when Chris Phillips blocked Alexei Zhitnik's one timer inside the Ottawa offensive zone, which pinged into center ice. That sent the Seantor's captain the other away untouched, where he beat DiPietro on the forehand.
A Shawn Bates penalty cost the Isles with 4:46 left in the opener as Dany Heatley added to Ottawa's lead. A shot by Alfredsson started things as he missed the net on a one-timer to DiPietro's left. Jason Spezza beat the Isle's defense to the puck behind the net, then found Heatley cruising in front unchecked for his 11th of the season.
The Islanders matched the Senators, energy-wise, early on in the second period after being out-skated for much of the opening period. But it was Dominik Hasek who turned in several quality stops to thwart the visitor's rally. The Ottawa keeper made a huge save during an Islander powerplay 13 minutes in when he denied Mark Parrish on the doorstep with a stellar left pad stop. It turned out to be a game-changing moment as on the next shift, Ottawa added to their lead.
Chris Neil recorded his sixth of the year when he deflected a Pothier slap shot from the right point. Pothier had intercepted a Janne Niinimaa clear and immediately flicked the puck at the Islander cage.
Ottawa's Heatley was given a penalty shot with 5:48 left in the same period when Alexei Zhitnik hauled down the Senator's left wing from behind. DiPietro came up big with a right pad rejection off a forehand attempt by Heatley.
The Senators kept the pressure on the Islanders in the third period and scored three goals as a result. Martin Havlat netted his seventh of the season 3:10 into the stanza with assists going to Antoine Vermette and Peter Scheafer to make it 4-0. With Robert Nilsson serving DiPietro's two-minute minor for roughing, the Sens made it 5-0 at 8:02 when Alfredsson recorded his second of the game. Spezza and Heatley registered the assists.
The Senators tallied their third powerplay goal of the night with Zhitnik serving two minutes for hooking. Former Islander Bryan Smolinski netted the goal at 13:19 with Mike Fisher and Chris Phillips registering the assists.
ICE CHIPS: Petteri Nokelainen (knee) and Tomi Pettinen were the Islander's scratches.
(79) Alexei Yashin-(12) Oleg Kvasha-(81) Miroslav Satan
(21) Robert Nilsson-(17) Shawn Bates-(37) Mark Parrish
(55) Jason Blake-(16) Mike York-(7) Trent Hunter
(49) Eric Godard-(45) Arron Asham-(11) Mattias Weinhandl
(77) Alexei Zhitnik-(24) Radek Martinek
(25) Brad Lukowich-(44) Janne Niinimaa
(14) Chris Campoli-(24) Radek Martinek
(39) Rick DiPietro
(30) Garth Snow
(15) Dany Heatley-(19) Jason Spezza-(11) Daniel Alfredsson
(12) Mike Fisher-(21) Bryan Smolinski-(25) Chris Neil
(27) Peter Schaefer-(20) Antoine Vermette-(9) Martin Havlat
(26) Vaclav Varada-(22) Chris Kelly-(16) Brian McGrattan
(4) Chris Phillips-(3) Zdeno Chara
(6) Wade Redden-(24) Anton Volchenkov
(14) Andrey Meszaros-(2) Brian Pothier
(39) Dominik Kasek
(1) Ray Emery