for this game

Heatley leads Senators over troubled Thrashers

Dec 4, 2008 - 5:20 AM
OTTAWA (Ticker) -- Dany Heatley took charge early and helped send his former team to another defeat.

Heatley recorded a goal and two assists in the first period and defenseman Brendan Bell netted a tally and set up another as the Ottawa Senators cruised to a 5-1 triumph Wednesday over the struggling Atlanta Thrashers.

Jason Spezza, captain Daniel Alfredsson and former Thrasher Shean Donovan also scored and blue-liner Filip Kuba notched a pair of assists for the Senators, who extended their home winning streak to three games and improved to 3-0-1 in their last four at Scotiabank Place.

"It was a perfect home game," Donovan said. "We came out hard and tried to force our will on them. We were ready tonight."

"We came out good and had a lot of energy and forechecked well," Senators coach Craig Hartsburg said. "Our big line was really good, especially early. They had a lot of jump and obviously did a lot of good things offensively. But they worked hard, outplayed whoever they were on the ice against, and their skill took over."

Alfredsson also recorded an assist and Alex Auld made 22 saves for Ottawa, which won for just the third time in its last 10 games.

"We knew they played last night, so we wanted to get the jump on them early," Alfredsson said. "We helped ourselves out that way."

Enforcer Eric Boulton netted the lone goal for the Thrashers, who have lost five in a row (0-4-1) and eight of nine (1-7-1).

"It's tough. We've lost eight games and only won one," Atlanta goaltender Ondrej Pavelec said. "This slump is a real frustration for us, and all we can do is try to win the next game."

"I don't think the score was a true indicator of how we played," Thrashers coach John Anderson said. "Their big line came out and scored a couple of goals early. Heatley, Spezza and Alfredsson were probably so sick of hearing about how they're not scoring, they wanted to prove everyone wrong."

Drafted second overall by Atlanta in 2000, Heatley spent the first three seasons of his NHL career with the Thrashers before being traded to the Senators in August 2005. The 27-year-old has thrived in three campaigns with Ottawa, posting consecutive 50-goal seasons before settling for 41 in 2007-08.

Heatley began the scoring against Atlanta just 78 seconds into this one, netting his 13th goal of the campaign by converting a pass from Bell. But Boulton forged a tie just 95 seconds later with his first tally in 47 games, beating Auld high to the glove side with a wrist shot from the right faceoff circle off a shovel pass from Joey Crabb, who notched his first career point on the play.

"(Jim) Slater tried to slide the puck over to Crabb in the middle," Boulton said. "He just tipped it over to me in the lane, and I tried to get a shot off as quick as possible and I beat him high glove. It was a short-lived high for us because they then scored a few minutes right after that. It was nice to get on the board, but it didn't mean anything."

Heatley set up Spezza for a one-timer from the slot that beat Pavelec to the stick side during a power play at 6:12, putting Ottawa ahead for good.

"We came out hard and the puck went in for us," Heatley said. "(Pavelec) made some big saves, especially early on. We got three, but it probably could have been five or six."

With 4:29 remaining in the opening period, Heatley completed his three-point effort by chipping a pass to Alfredsson, who fired the puck past Pavelec for his seventh goal of the campaign and a 3-1 advantage.

"They kind of pinched and we were able to get on a 2-on-1," Alfredsson said. "Heatley said he kind of hoped the defense was going to come to him because he felt he had a step on them. He was able to get it to me and I was able to get it by the goalie as he tried to poke-check me. That was nice to get."

"Our problem was that we didn't play 60 minutes," Pavelec said. "The first period was a good example, as they had 19 shots. They were a lot better than us in skating and in shooting the puck."

Bell increased the lead with 66 seconds to go in the middle period, blasting a one-timer from above the right circle past Pavelec for his first tally since the 2006-07 season while with Toronto.

"We've had trouble scoring goals, so it was great to be able to put five on the board," Bell said. "For me personally, it's always nice to be able to contribute and pick up a couple of points."

"Brendan was solid," Hartsburg said. "He had a good game. He stepped in on the cycle and made a great pass on the Heatley goal, and got the shot through on the power play for his own goal. He was real solid for us."

Bell's goal came after Ottawa successfully killed a 5-on-3 power play that lasted a full two minutes thanks to three overlapping penalties.

"Our penalty-killing was huge," Hartsburg said. "They had that 5-on-3, and that's a big kill against any team in the league. And when you have a shooter like (Ilya) Kovalchuk out there, it's even bigger. But that kill at that time of the game was huge for us."

"Killing those penalties and coming out from that 5-on-3 unscathed was a big moment for us," Auld said. "They've got a lot of skilled guys and good shooters, and if you give those guys too many looks, they're going to put some pucks in the net. But we did a great job applying pressure and not giving them space and blocking shots. I don't know, but I don't think I had that many shots during that 5-on-3."

Donovan, who played for the Thrashers from 1999-2002, capped the scoring with 3:31 left in the third, deking past a defender in the right circle and beating Pavelec for his fourth tally.

Pavelec made 29 saves for Atlanta.

"He played great," Thrashers center - and former Senator - Todd White said. "He gave us the chance to win, but we couldn't even score on an open-net one-timer."






  • 20
    roots
    MattDOOM777 Added 5 roots

    Thrashers 1, Senators 5  FinalDec 3 11:22 PM


  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    ATLANTA 1 0 0 1
    OTTAWA 3 1 1 5 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: OTT - DANY HEATLEY 13 (BRENDAN BELL, DANIEL ALFREDSSON) 1:18
    ATL - ERIC BOULTON 1 (JOSEPH CRABB, JIM SLATER) 2:53
    OTT - (PP) JASON SPEZZA 8 (DANY HEATLEY, FILIP KUBA) 6:12
    OTT - DANIEL ALFREDSSON 7 (DANY HEATLEY, FILI

    Dec 3 9:32 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 1
    OTTAWA 5
    3RD PRD: OTT - SHEAN DONOVAN 4 (CHRISTOPH SCHUBERT, JARKKO RUUTU)
    16:29

    Thrashers 1, Senators 5  3rd - 3:31Dec 3 9:26 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    ATLANTA 1 0 1
    OTTAWA 3 1 4 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: OTT - DANY HEATLEY 13 (BRENDAN BELL, DANIEL ALFREDSSON) 1:18
    ATL - ERIC BOULTON 1 (JOSEPH CRABB, JIM SLATER) 2:53
    OTT - (PP) JASON SPEZZA 8 (DANY HEATLEY, FILIP KUBA) 6:12
    OTT - DANIEL ALFREDSSON 7 (DANY

    Dec 3 8:44 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 1
    OTTAWA 4
    2ND PRD: OTT - (PP) BRENDAN BELL 1 (MIKE FISHER, RYAN SHANNON) 18:54

    Thrashers 1, Senators 4  2nd - 1:06Dec 3 8:41 PM
  • 15
    roots
    #1 Cards Fan Added 10 roots

    Thrashers 1, Senators 3  End of 1stDec 3 8:04 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    ATLANTA 1 1
    OTTAWA 3 3 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: OTT - DANY HEATLEY 13 (BRENDAN BELL, DANIEL ALFREDSSON) 1:18
    ATL - ERIC BOULTON 1 (JOSEPH CRABB, JIM SLATER) 2:53
    OTT - (PP) JASON SPEZZA 8 (DANY HEATLEY, FILIP KUBA) 6:12
    OTT - DANIEL ALFREDSSON 7 (DANY

    Dec 3 7:49 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 1
    OTTAWA 3
    1ST PRD: OTT - DANIEL ALFREDSSON 7 (DANY HEATLEY, FILIP KUBA) 15:31

    Thrashers 1, Senators 3  1st - 4:29Dec 3 7:43 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 1
    OTTAWA 2
    1ST PRD: OTT - (PP) JASON SPEZZA 8 (DANY HEATLEY, FILIP KUBA) 6:12

    Thrashers 1, Senators 2  1st - 13:48Dec 3 7:20 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 1
    OTTAWA 1
    1ST PRD: ATL - ERIC BOULTON 1 (JOSEPH CRABB, JIM SLATER) 2:53

    Thrashers 1, Senators 1  1st - 17:07Dec 3 7:15 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 0
    OTTAWA 1
    1ST PRD: OTT - DANY HEATLEY 13 (BRENDAN BELL, DANIEL ALFREDSSON) 1:18

    Thrashers 0, Senators 1  1st - 18:42Dec 3 7:13 PM
  • 5
    roots
    sensfaninohio Added 5 roots

    Thrashers vs. SenatorsDec 3 2:30 PM