OTTAWA 5. ISLANDERS 2
Already up 2-0 after two periods, the Ottawa Senators blew tonight's game wide open with three goals early in the third period on their way to a 5-1 tonight over the Islanders in Ottawa.
Ottawa scored three goals in a span of 1:16 early in the third. The goals were scored by Chris Neil (at 2:00 of the third), Dean McAmmond (2:24) and Jason Spezza (3:16). After the Senators made it 5-0, Wade Dubielewicz replaced starter Mike Dunham in nets.
The Islanders broke Ray Amery's shutout bid when Miroslav Satan scored off a pass from Alexei Yashin on a 5-on-3 power play with just over five minutes remaining in regulation. Drew Fata scored for the Islanders with five seconds remaining -- his first NHL goal -- to make it 5-2.
The Islanders started the second period slowly and paid the price, as goals by Chris Kelly (1:59) and Joe Corvo (5:53) gave the Senators a 2-0 lead after two periods.
In the first two shifts of the sesond period, the Islanders failed to clear the puck out of their own end safely five times. On the third shift, Chris Campoli lined up incoming Ottawa forward Antoine Vermette for a big hit at the blue line, but Randy Robitaille was not strong on his man and Kelly went in and scored on Mike Dunham. Less than four minutes later, Corvo made it 2-0 on a deflection goal from Mike Comrie and Dean McAmmond.
By the middle of the second period, Ted Nolan started to tinker with his lines. Alexei Yashin was off the line with Ryan Smyth and Jason Blake, and Richard Zednik had replaced Andy HIlbert on the Trent Hunter-Mike Sillinger line.
The Islanders' next game is on Saturday night in Florida against the Panthers.
BOSSY'S IN-GAME BLOG: Checking in via Blackberry from his Quebec home tonight is Islanders legend Mike Bossy, who will share his thoughts after each period:
Not our best effort tonight. We lost our focus at crucial times tonight and defensive zone coverage was poor. There are nights like this. You forget about it, re-group and start thinking about the next one. I'm not sure I like watching games like tonight, but I'll be there Saturday night cheering the boys on.
sent by MIKE BOSSY AT 10:06 pm EST
Not a great second period for the boys. Ottawa has a fast team and you can't let them get started. After a slow start for them in the first period, you had to expect them to put a lot of pressure on us and they did. If you add that to far too many giveaways you get what we got. Too many good opportunities by Ottawa, penalties for hooking and holding and an unlucky goal off Bergeron's skate. We did have some chances, but unfortunately none found the back of the net.
sent by MIKE BOSSY AT 9:04 pm EST
Not an easy way to start a game. No DiPietro, no Hill. Typical road game start for our guys. A couple of line changes. I think Yash will fit in well with Jason and Ryan. Have to keep our feet moving along the boards and make them take some penalties. I have to watch the game with the Ottawa announcers. I've almost had enough. They are not very objective. Good period by Dunny.
sent by MIKE BOSSY AT 8:12 pm EST
Notes: Drew Fata was recalled today on an emergency basis from Bridgeport (AHL) to replace Sean Hill, who missed the game with what Ted Nolan termed "a minor groin pull" in a pre-game interviewÂ¦Rick DiPietro (neck stiffness), Shawn Bates (sports hernia), Bruno Gervais (ankle) and Jeff Tambellini (healthy) were the other scratches.
With the injuries and line juggling, here's Ted Nolan's lineup for tonight:
Brendan Witt Freddy Meyer
Tom Poti - Marc-Andre Bergeron
Chris Campoli - Drew Fata
Ryan Smyth - Alexei Yashin - Jason Blake
Viktor Kozlov - Randy Robitaille - Miroslav Satan
Andy Hilbert - Mike Sillinger - Trent Hunter
Richard Zednik - Richard Park - Arron Asham
Photo by A. Ringuette/Freestyle Photography/OSHC