OTTAWA - The Ottawa Senators fell 6-3 to the Carolina Hurricanes Monday, but the real extent of the loss could be much worse than two points in the standings.
Andrej Nestrasil had a goal and two assists in the game for the Hurricanes, but a goal crease collision in the final minute of the second period cost the Senators the services of goaltender Robin Lehner and forward Clarke MacArthur for the third period, and potentially longer.
The final 54 seconds of the second period was played just prior to the start of the third following the violent collision that ended with a go-ahead goal for the Hurricanes.
MacArthur took the worst of the collision between he, Lehner and Jay McClement, who picked up the goal. MacArthur was racing back to try and break up a three-on-one rush but ended up plowing face first into Lehner as all three players ended up in the net.
"He was laying it there for sure," McClement said of MacArthur.
'"It's just unfortunate and kind of a freak accident for sure. Clarkey is actually a good buddy so I hope they're both OK."
The stretcher was brought out but MacArthur eventually got to his feet and was helped to the dressing room by teammates.
"A scary play is a heck of a way to describe it with both guys getting banged up," said Senators coach Dave Cameron, who had no update following the game on the status of the two players.
"The fact that we went to the room and had time to regroup because play didn't continue, I think certainly helped out and allowed us to catch our breath."
Lehner was replaced in net by Andrew Hammond, who had made 11 saves in 35 minutes of action in his only previous NHL appearance. Hammond stopped 3-of-5 shots in Monday's loss.
"It happened so fast and the way they went down and weren't moving, it was scary," Senators forward Bobby Ryan said. "You automatically think about them and the goal becomes very secondary at that point."
Nathan Gerbe, Jeff Skinner, Michal Jordan and Chris Terry also scored for the Hurricanes (20-28-7).
Erik Condra, Mike Hoffman and Cody Ceci had goals for the Senators (22-23-10).
After taking four one-goal leads over the first two periods, the Hurricanes finally got a two-goal cushion when Jordan scored his first NHL goal at 2:33 of the third period. Terry made it 6-3 at 9:49 with the Hurricanes' third power-play goal of the game.
McClement's goal ended a furious period that saw the Hurricanes take leads of 2-1, 3-2 and 4-3 on goals from Skinner at 8:06, Gerbe at 13:26 and McClement.
Hoffman scored at 10:25 to tie the game for the Senators and Ceci scored 32 seconds after the Grebe goal to tie the game once again, this time 3-3.
The Hurricanes also held a 1-0 lead in the first period as Nestrasil scored at 6:49 but Condra scored late in the period to tie the game.
Shane Prince collected an assist on the goal for his first NHL point in his first NHL game. It was also a bit of a homecoming for Prince as he played three seasons of junior hockey with the Ottawa 67's, where he collected 191 points in 142 games.
Notes: Defenceman mark Borowiecki was the lone scratch for the Senators Monday while defenceman John-Michael Liles along with forwards Alexander Semin and Victor Rask were scratches for the Hurricanes. … Defenceman Marc Methot signed a four-year extension with the Senators Monday.