The Ottawa Senators were happy to get things going tonight in their first round Stanley Cup Playoff match up versus the New York Rangers, but they came out with the short end of the stick tonight, dropping a 4-2 decision in game one.
Here are three reasons why the Senators lost game one:
1. Weak on the puck in their own end: Poor puck management led directly to two of the Rangers four goals. Jared Cowen coughed up the puck to Marian Gaborik in the defensive zone, and Anderson had no chance against the New York sniper as Gaborik slid the puck through his five hole and into the back of the net.
Nick Foligno was the next to be victimized when he went to pick the puck up behind the Ottawa net only to have it stolen by Carl Hagelin who hit a streaking Brad Richards, who promptly found the twine.
The Senators will need to be better prepared for the New York forecheck, and make better and quicker decisions with the puck coming out of their own end in game two.
2. Craig Anderson outplayed by Henrik Lundqvist: Anderson was matching King Henrik well until mid way though the second period, when after a Rangers timeout the Ottawa goalie seemed unable to see the puck for a period of time letting three of the next four shots he faced elude him. By the time he got his skates back underneath him it was too late and his team was in a 4-0 hole.
Anderson will need to be better if Ottawa wants to take this series deep.
3. Ineffective Powerplay: At times it seemed like the Senators powerplay was killing their momentum. The Rangers did a great job of pressuring the Ottawa break outs, getting into the passing lanes, and blocking shots.
Ottawa will need to work out the kinks, and make the Rangers pay for their mistakes.
Game two of this Eastern Conference quarterfinal goes Saturday night in New York City at 6:30.