Saturday, October 21, 2017
For the first time in a long time, we can finally say the Battle of Ontario has a certain degree of substance with the emergence of two playoff-caliber teams last season. Auston Matthews and his four-goal NHL debut against the Senators helped ignite that rivalry in 2016, but if we all remember, Ottawa still managed to win that game.
Erik Karlsson has recently returned to action after having offseason foot surgery, opening his season with 3 points in 2 games. Meanwhile, the Sens sit at a respectable 3-1-3, despite recently being shut-out by Vancouver with Karlsson in the lineup. In fact, they have yet to win with him in the lineup.
The Maple Leafs came out sluggish, despite having several days off prior to their date in Ottawa.
It appeared the Senators held the upper-hand early on and applied the pressure accordingly. It wasn’t before long that Ottawa held a 1-0 lead.
Frederik Andersen made an unbelievable save reliant on acrobatics, only to be upstaged by a simple drive to the net. He spun around to make a glove save behind his back, but couldn’t cover the puck for a whistle. After making the initial save, Nate Thompson put his head down and drove towards the net in hopes of pushing the puck over the line, and he did just that.
Ottawa took an early lead and had seemingly dominated the opening frame up until that point. The Maple Leafs had just 3-shots when the goal was scored, but appeared to awaken from their slumber out of sheer panic immediately after.
Nothing would materialize out of that short surge, and the Sens would ride their one-goal lead into the second period.