Thu, 30 Mar 2023

Newcomer gives Sens a boost ahead of Toronto trip

Field Level Media
27 Jan 2023, 07:40 GMT+10

Ridly Greig made a good impression in his NHL debut on Wednesday and the Ottawa Senators hope to see more of the same Friday night when they visit the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Greig had the primary assist on a power-play goal by Claude Giroux in the second period that turned out to be the game-winnerin the Senators' 2-1 victory over the visiting New York Islanders.

Greig, 20, finished with a game-high eight shots on goal -- tied for the most in an NHL debut -- in 13:46 of ice time.

"When the opportunity comes I was going to shoot it," Greig said. "Just happened to be eight this time."

Greig was called up from the Belleville Senators of the American Hockey League where he had 12 goals and 11 assists.

"He's fun to play with," Giroux said. "His game is very mature. I remember my first game, mentally I wasn't very there, so it's pretty impressive the way he was playing and winning puck battles. We had a good time."

The opposition will be more difficult on Friday. The Maple Leafs have won the first two contests of a five-game homestand.

Mitchell Marner scored 19 seconds into overtime with a superb individual effort in the Maple Leafs' 3-2 win over the New York Rangers on Wednesday. Toronto defenseman Timothy Liljegren scored the tying goal late in the third period.

"We kept the game close enough to give ourselves a chance to stay with it," Maple Leafs coach Sheldon Keefe said. "It was probably going to be one that we would have to end up shooting our way in and get a bounce to go our way. There was not a whole lot happening for us. You have to give credit to New York. They were on top of us."

William Nylander drew an assist on Toronto's second goal to give him 400 career points.

"It's a step on the way," Nylander said. "It's nothing I'm celebrating or anything. Just have to keep it going."

Ilya Samsonov, making his fourth straight start in goal for Toronto, stopped 27 shots.

Samsonov is 14-0-1 at home this season, the Maple Leafs' longest home point streak since Jacques Plante's 15-game streak in 1970-71.

"We believe in him and have high expectations, but nobody expects anybody to have a record like that," Keefe said. "It's quite remarkable."

Greig, who was selected by Ottawa in the first round (No. 28) of the 2020 NHL Draft, said he idolized Giroux growing up.

"It was unreal," Greig said. "You know, obviously, a dream come true, just to get out there and obviously to get the win. It's pretty good."

"He looked unreal, honestly," said Shane Pinto, who scored Ottawa's first goal. "That two-way game, we're going to need that, and he stepped up big for us (Wednesday) and to play that kind of game in your first NHL game is awesome. Very happy for him."

The Senators will be without goaltender Cam Talbot for an unknown period. He sustained a lower-body injury during the second period of the game Wednesday. Goaltender Kevin Mandolese was recalled from Belleville.

Talbot stopped all 14 shots he faced. Anton Forsberg, who took over for Talbot and allowed one goal on 22 shots on Wednesday, is expected to start in Toronto.

--Field Level Media

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