It was a close, back and forth game, but special teams would prove the difference maker for the Sens on Wednesday night. Giving up a short-handed goal and a powerplay goal seven minutes apart in the third, the Sens lost to the Jets 3-2 despite almost 40 minutes of 1-1 hockey.
By Zach Mulder
The Sens struck first and they struck early, with Nick Paul opening the scoring just 1:19 into the game. A dump in ended up in the feet of a Winnipeg defender by the blue line and Paul was able to corral the puck and get past the defender, beating Brossoit over his blocker side shoulder.
NICK PAUL! 1-0 OTT early. #GoSensGo pic.twitter.com/gyiTVZUXII
— Everyday Sens (@EverydaySens) April 14, 2021
The lead would be short-lived however, as Mark Scheifele would tie it at one just over two minutes later. Nikolaj Ehlers carried the puck in and down to the corner where he would spin and send a backhand pass to a wide open Scheifele who tapped it past Matt Murray and into the open net.
From the Scheifele goal to the start of the third period neither team could find the back of the net, and not because chances weren’t there. Murray and Brossoit would take turns shutting the door until the third period, where Mathieu Perreault would break the deadlock. Josh Norris would find himself in the box for tripping 46 seconds into the third period, and Winnipeg capitalized. On the powerplay Perreault got the puck at the top of the circle, glided to the faceoff dot and rifled a snipe past Murray’s glove, demolishing his water bottle in the process.
Perreault absolutely wrecked that water bottle 💥 pic.twitter.com/8SfFzIa0XH
— NHL GIFs (@NHLGIFs) April 15, 2021
Seven and a half minutes later Ottawa would have a powerplay of their own, but the outcome would be very different. Chabot would misplay a puck along the boards and wasn’t able to hold the line. Trevor Lewis would scoop up the puck in the neutral zone and break in uncontested before beating Murray top glove corner, giving the Jets a 3-1 lead with 10 minutes to go.
The Sens would fight the rest of the way, earning a powerplay that became a two man advantage with 16 seconds left. Josh Norris would take six seconds to cut the lead to one, beating Brossoit short side with the one timer. However the goal would prove too little too late for the Sens, as time would run out after the center ice faceoff.
Josh Norris pads the stats late! #GoSensGo
Sens need to get him shooting more on the powerplay. Wicked shot. pic.twitter.com/g7wF2kFm1I
— Everyday Sens (@EverydaySens) April 15, 2021
Despite the loss, there were a few silver linings for the Sens. Murray looked sharp in his first game in five weeks, closing the door on premium Jets chances that could have easily turned a close game into a blowout. It was also the NHL debut for recently signed Jacob Bernard-Docker after Nikita Zaitsev sat with an injury. Bernard-Docker looked calm and composed, showing few signs of first game jitters or rookie rust despite being shoved into the lineup unexpectedly.
The Sens’ next game comes on Saturday when they travel to Montreal to take on the Habs in a 4:00 afternoon game.