OTTAWA — The Ottawa Senators will have some tough decisions going forward on what to do with some of their younger players. Two of them didn't make things easier Saturday night.
Logan Brown had two goals and an assist and Alex Formenton chipped in with two assists as the Senators beat the Montreal Canadiens 5-1 in pre-season play.
Both Brown and Formenton played junior last season and are looking to crack the Senators lineup. Brown, who scored a power-play late in the third period to close out the scoring, won a Memorial Cup in May with the Windsor Spitfires while Formenton was a member of the London Knights.
"Our young guys did a terrific job playing to their strengths and playing within the system. Shows how smart they are," Senators goaltender Craig Anderson explained.
"It's good to see that a lot of our guys have high potential."
Max Reinhart, Johnny Oduya and Mark Stone also scored for Ottawa (3-0-0) while Anderson made 25 saves, playing the whole game.
"It was fun out there playing 60 minutes and just mentally going through the routine and making sure you're staying sharp through the full 60 minutes," Anderson said.
Charles Hudon had the lone goal for the Canadiens (0-4-0), who got a 31-save performance from Al Montoya.
Brown now has three goals in two pre-season games and took advantage of his opportunity to play with Bobby Ryan and Stone Saturday by taking some of their advice.
"Just be confident and play my game. They're so smart and so skilled so I was just trying to get them the puck and get open. It was definitely fun playing with them," Brown said.
"It feels good to definitely keep the confidence up. I feel I had a good first game and I wanted to carry it on here. I had a really good opportunity with my line mates and I wanted to make the most out of it and have fun."
The Senators went into the third period with a comfortable 4-1 lead thanks to a pair of goals in each of the first two periods.
Jeremy Gregoire had the game's first scoring chance but his shot rang off the post behind Anderson in the Ottawa goal.
Seconds later Brown opened the scoring at four minutes when he deposited a rebound off a Bobby Ryan shot past Montoya.
Brown picked up his second point of the period when Reinhart scored from the top of the crease at 9:52 to give the Senators a 2-0 lead.
Oduya put the Senators up 3-0 just 90 seconds into the second period with a slap shot from the face-off circle that went through the legs of Montoya.
"This is an opportunity every time you step on the ice to put your best foot forward. We just came out a little slow maybe and they ran with it. Personally, for myself, I felt better as the game went on, but there's some you want back," Montoya said.
"It's all about confidence and being mentally sharp. You just want to make sure you're sticking to your fundamentals and you're not going outside the box trying to make saves or do things you normally do."
The Senators were in complete control of the second period as they outshot the Canadiens 12-4 in the middle period. They went up 4-0 nine minutes in when Stone, standing at the side of the net, redirected a point shot from Maxime Lajoie past Montoya.
The period wasn't a complete waste for the Canadiens, as Hudon beat Anderson with a wrister to the top corner at 12:12 to get Montreal on the board.
"We had some highlights, but it's difficult to be happy with highlights after a loss like that," Hudon explained.
"There are things I certainly need to improve on, that's for sure. It wasn't my best game. We'll go home now and work on some of the details and work on the little things that (coach|) Claude (Julien) has been asking us to do since the beginning of camp and that we didn't do tonight.'
Notes: Ottawa has three pre-season games remaining, one at Winnipeg, one at Montreal and a neutral site game in Charlottetown against the New Jersey Devils.. Montreal has a home-and-home with Toronto and will host Ottawa and Florida to conclude their pre-season