Four things we learned in NHL: Senators’ streak ends at six

Mike Babcock talks about the Toronto Maple Leafs getting routed by the Florida Panthers.

• Senators suffer first loss in March
• Maple Leafs fall out of playoff spot
• Ovechkin finally gets a goal

The Ottawa Senators‘ winning streak may have ended on Tuesday but the team should still be pleased with its performance.

The Toronto Maple Leafs, on the other hand, don’t have anything to be pleased with after getting crushed by the Florida Panthers. Toronto now find themselves on the outside looking in to the playoff picture.

Here are four things we learned:

Condon heroic for Senators

Mike Condon stepped in for an injured Craig Anderson on Tuesday and was spectacular. In only his second start of the month, Condon made 35 saves, including multiple that you’ll be seeing on highlight reels, to help his team salvage a point in a 2-1 overtime loss to the Lightning.

The loss ended a six-game winning streak for the Senators. Had they won, Ottawa would be tied for the lead in the Atlantic Division after the Montreal Canadiens lost to the Chicago Blackhawks. Nevertheless, getting at least one point is huge, as the Habs only lead by one point now with the Senators holding two games in hand.

Senators general manager Pierre Dorion joined Prime Time Sports on Tuesday to talk about the recent success his team is having.

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Prime Time Sports - March 14 - 5pm
Originally aired March 14 2017

The race to win the Atlantic is far from over and even in a loss, the Senators remain poised to challenge Montreal right to the end.


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East playoff picture is wild

The Atlantic Division isn’t the only exciting playoff race in Eastern Conference. The second wild card spot is still being fought over by four teams and on Tuesday, the shuffling continued.

The Maple Leafs failed to make any ground after being blown out 7-2 by the Panthers. Florida’s second goal provided a visual metaphor for the Maple Leafs’ move in the playoff race.

Both the New York Islanders and the Tampa Bay Lightning leapfrogged the Maple Leafs with wins on Tuesday. The Lightning and Islanders each now have 77 points, but the Islanders get a slight edge thanks to ROW (regulation and overtime wins).

By beating the Maple Leafs, the Panthers now have 71 points and are still very much in the race.

With all the movement in the standings, I think we now know why they call it the “wild” card.

Flames not only Alberta team making noise

The Edmonton Oilers were clearly sick of the Calgary Flames grabbing all the headlines.

After losing three in a row and dropping into the wild card, the Oilers crushed the visiting Dallas Stars 7-1 on Tuesday.

Surprisingly, Connor McDavid didn’t get into the action until the final goal, but even in a blowout game he still made sure to add to his highlight reel.

The win pulled the Oilers within one point of both the Ducks and Flames in the fight for seeding in the Pacific Division. But more importantly, the win should calm any Oilers fans who worried they would fall out of the playoff picture completely. Unlike the Stars, the Oilers will be just fine.

The only person who should be worried is actually McDavid, as Patrick Kane caught him in the scoring race on Tuesday. While he’ll always say he’s focused on team wins first, you have to think a tight competition for the Art Ross will boost McDavid’s scoring down the stretch.

Ovechkin snaps a scoring drought

Alex Ovechkin scoring goals has been as consistent as the sunrise throughout his entire career. Which is why his latest scoring drought, a career high 10 games, was so shocking. Is it possible that one of the games greatest scorers has lost his touch?

Well, Ovechkin silenced any critics Tuesday when he scored against the Minnesota Wild. It was a classic Ovie goal, a one-timer from the off-wing that found a way past Devan Dubnyk.

During Ovechkin’s streak, the Capitals went 5-5-0 and he now has 28 goals and 58 points on the season. With Oveckin’s numbers not what they usually are, Nick Backstrom has been carrying the offence in D.C. this season.

Backstrom added another three assists Tuesday, giving him 50 on the season. That, along with 21 goals, has Backstrom sixth in league scoring.