[Frank Chartrand - AP]
Ontario hockey teams are not very good, are they? Both got shutout last night at home, both were booing their own teams, and neither look like they'll make it to the playoffs anytime soon without some serious housekeeping.
San Jose thumped Ottawa 4-0 in a game overshadowed by the former Ottawa 67 Logan Couture returning to Ottawa to a chorus of boos.
The sad thing, at least from my perspective? If the Senators continue to struggle as they are, and there seems to be little reason to expect otherwise, tonight may very well end up as the biggest game for the team. And it was an opportunity devastatingly lost.[Peter Raaymakers - SilverSevens.com]
That's a good point. If the team is nowhere near playoff positioning by March, then the games dwindle in importance and it's the 'character' games that count. This was one of those games, and they got blown out at home by a team that was only 11-12 coming into last night's game. It was a winnable affair for the Senators, and they lost in terrible, terrible fashion.
A little further south (both geographically and in the standings) the Toronto Maple Leafs lost 5-0 to the Edmonton Oilers, despite a quite impressive possession advantage. The big story in all this is that Leaf fans, fed up with recent team performance chanted "Fire Wilson" midway through the third period. It gets easier for the Leafs, they get to play Philadelphia, Washington and Pittsburgh next week, after hosting Tyler Seguin and the Boston Bruins Saturday night.
By the way, Edmonton's win gave them their 22nd point in 25 games. This is an important number because it ties them with the Calgary Flames and their five defenseman powerplay unit. Thanks to the new 'shootout wins count less than actual wins' rule, Calgary are now the worst team in the Western Conference, after they got blown out at home by Vancouver Wednesday night.
Basically, unless you cheer for Montreal or Vancouver, you may as well make vacation plans for April.