Following the Ottawa Senators’ Game 2 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins Monday night, some media pundits – Hockey Night in Canada’s Don Cherry chief among them – strongly suggested that the Ottawa Senators should move away from the tight-checking style that got them to the third round of the Stanley Cup playoffs and start attacking the hobbled Pittsburgh Penguins defence.
If Senators goaltender Craig Anderson’s comments following the game were any indication, Ottawa won’t be moving away from what has already prove to be a successful formula for winning hockey games.
Here’s what he told reporters following the loss…
QUESTION: Craig, was there anything different you saw from the Penguins last night compared to Game 1?
CRAIG ANDERSON: Not really, it was just a lot of the same. They’re tight checking, close games just like Game 1 was. You know, it was something we were expecting.
Q: Was there more zone time, at least from our perspective, it looked like there was more offensive zone time from Pittsburgh.
CA: I mean, the second period I think they had it in our zone for a bit, we were defending, we defended pretty well, we kept them to the outside. But you know, as far as scoring chances or chances we were giving up, I didn’t feel like there was any more in the second game than the first.
Q: Is it in your mindset to, zero-zero through 40 minutes, instinctively on the road to just try and protect that?
CA: Uh, you still need to score to win the game, so I don’t think, consciously, we’re doing anything different in the third than any other time.
Q: So it was more Pittsburgh, then, than you guys, in terms of chance and shots?
CA: I think they’re a good team and they were … they battened down the hatch there and didn’t really let us … we’ll have to, you know, look at the tapes, there’s lots of video that we’ll be able to break down and make some adjustments.
CA: That suits our system and our game play, and we’ve played all season in a tight-checking game, so, you know, I think it’s to our advantage to continue to play that way.
Q: Did you see a lot more traffic? Somebody said they wanted to be in front of you more.
CA: Um, yeah, there was some traffic. Like I said, I didn’t really see that much of a difference between Game 1 and Game 2, it was a lot of the same. I thought they did a pretty good job in Game 1 of getting in front of the net, so I’m not sure what they were seeing.
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