Sens Role Over Oilers

The first 7 minutes seemed to follow exactly the script I expected, Edmonton would come out guns a blazing, and Ottawa would be forced to respond by bending, but not breaking, and hope Andy could come up big in the face of the early onslaught.

What I didn’t expect was for the Oil to spring a leak under little or no pressure, which they did by surrendering 2 goals on the first two shot against.

I’m a fan of MMA, and in the world of combat sports it’s not un-common to see a young fighter lose his focus when he smells blood, and be taken advantage of by a more experienced athlete when the attacker drops his defense and goes all out for the finish.

To me, that is exactly what happened to Edmonton, they become so bent on swarming the Senators that they left their chin and neck exposed.  First Greening stunned them with a counter punch to the chops, then, on their way down, Dawg put them in the guillotine choke allowing Mich to force the tap out, all before the end of the first period.

It wasn’t a one punch knock-out, but it was over early, due to submission/tap-out.

When a fighter wins one like that, other fighters stand-up and take notice, knowing they can’t just expect to walk over this guy who has proven able to take a stiff punch and keep calm under pressure.

That’s what great fighters can do, take a punch, maintain their composure under pressure, and effectively exploit any weakness their opponent might give them.  Not every champion is a great finisher, but every great champion has the above attributes.

The Sens have shown this character many times already, both in games, and in tough stretches, and this quality cannot be under-estimated.  It cannot be taught, it’s either there, or it isn’t.  I’m not saying they’re done developing, or aren’t going to take a step some big steps back, but to see this skill at this juncture, is a very positve development.

The next nice factor coming out of that game was the diversity of the offense, not just over players, but over lines.  If this team of middling offensive skill can be a threat on all lines, it only strengthens the impact of the top lines.  But, this team is FAR from being a proven squad of multiple scoring threats.

The biggest test yet of this road trip will come in Vancouver, and there’s no way the Sens are going to get any lee way from the ‘Nucks after stunning and submitting its two Alberta foes.



One Response to “Sens Role Over Oilers”

  1. Excellent MMA analogy. Worked beautifully.

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