1992 – Ottawa Senators enter the league as an expansion franchise.
December 4, 1996 – Daniel Alfredsson’s first NHL fight against Darius Kasparaitis.
December 30, 2000 – Jaromir Jagr records his 1,000th career NHL point against the Sens on a goal assisted by Mario Lemieux.
February 12, 2002 – Mario Lemieux and Karel Rachunek are cross checking each other leading to Lemieux dropping the gloves. A bunch of players get involved before many punches can be thrown.
January 22, 2004 – 6’9″ Zdeno Chara fights 6’8″ Steve McKenna in a battle between the two biggest men in hockey.
March 21, 2006 – The period is over but the fun is just beginning as Eric Cairns comes off the bench to go after Zdeno Chara.
April 5, 2007 – Late in the regular season, Colby Armstrong runs Ray Emery leading to a big scrum.
2007 EASTERN CONFERENCE QUARTERFINALS
Ottawa wins 4-1 and would eventually be on their way to the Stanley Cup Final. This was the first playoff appearance for the Penguins in five seasons and the first for the young trio of Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Marc-Andre Fleury. The series was a 4-5 matchup as both teams finished the regular season with 105 points. Ottawa had the higher seed based on wins and the more experienced Senators were too much for the young Penguins to overcome.
- Game 3 – Colby Armstrong delivers a hard hit to Patrick Eaves that results in Eaves being taken out on a stretcher and a fight between Maxime Talbot & Dean McAmmond.
March 1, 2008 – The rivalry begins to intensify as Antoine Vermette takes a run at Sergei Gonchar and Maxime Talbot goes after him. Chris Phillips nails Evgeni Malkin from behind and Ryan Malone defends his teammate.
April 6, 2008 – The Penguins lose 2-0 to the Philadelphia Flyers in the final game of the regular season. Ottawa coach Bryan Murray accuses the Penguins of tanking the game so they would get Ottawa in the first round.
I knew what was going on … they wanted to play Ottawa. It was fairly obvious from the first drop of the puck. (Bryan Murray)
2008 EASTERN CONFERENCE QUARTERFINALS
Pittsburgh sweeps Ottawa 4-0, starting their run to the Stanley Cup Final. Unlike the previous year, this was a 2-7 matchup with Pittsburgh finishing 8 points better than Ottawa in the regular season. The Pens now had some playoff experience and the Sens were banged up. Daniel Alfredsson missed the first two games with an injury and the Pens jumped all over the Sens. Sidney Crosby led the way with 8 points in the four games.
- Game 1 – Anton Volchenkov gets an Evgeni Malkin slap shot to the face. Wade Redden gets into it with Sidney Crosby so Ryan Whitney pulls Redden off and makes him pay for touching Sid the Kid.
- Game 2 – Sidney Crosby collects 4 assists in a 5-3 win for his first ever 4 point playoff game.
- Game 3 – The infamous Ottawa Senators Spartan introduction that they may never live down.
- Highlights – Game One, Game Two, Game Three, Game Four, Series Highlights
October 4th & 5th, 2008 – Ottawa and Pittsburgh open the NHL season in Sweden
November 19, 2009 – Matt Cooke goes knee-on-knee with Shean Donovan with a hit that results in a torn ACL for Donovan.
January 28, 2010 – Chris Neil crushes Mark Eaton with a hit behind the net that shakes him up.
2010 EASTERN CONFERENCE QUARTERFINALS
Pittsburgh wins 4-2 but gets upset in the Conference Semifinals by Montreal. Two seasons after their previous meeting, the Penguins were now defending Cup champions. This was another 4-5 matchup but the spread was larger as the Pens finished 7 points up on the Sens. Ottawa won the opener 5-4 including Erik Karlsson’s first ever playoff goal. The Penguins came back and won the next three games. With the series on the line, Game Five went to Triple Overtime where Matt Carkner scored one of the unlikeliest OT winners in playoff history to force a Game Six. That game also went into overtime but this time it was Pascal Dupuis, who won it for the Pens.
- Game 2 – Sidney Crosby puts on a show at Jason Spezza’s expense.
- Game 2 – Andy Sutton absolutely destroys Jordan Leopold with a hit. Post-game Sutton gives the infamous “So you’re an expert?” interview.
- Game 3 – Hockey Night In Canada Opening Montage – Sidney Crosby Edition
- Game 4 – Chris Neil goes after Jordan Staal while Jarkko Ruutu tries to fight Matt Cooke.
- Game 5 – Mike Fisher’s head collides with Brooks Orpik’s face causing a bloody nose. The ref gives Fisher a double minor for high sticking! Matt Carkner’s Triple OT goal.
- Game 6 – Pascal Dupuis’ OT series winner.
- Highlights – Game One, Game Two, Game Three, Game Four, Game Five, Game Six
December 26, 2010 – Kris Letang drills Jason Spezza from behind into the boards.
November 25, 2011 – Nick Foligno and Sidney Crosby are battling in front of the net until Crosby nails Foligno with a pretty good elbow. Foligno calls Crosby out about headshots and Crosby gives his response saying it was just a hockey scrum.
March 24, 2012 – The Pens and Sens try not to laugh during the national anthems.
February 13, 2013 – Matt Cooke’s skate cuts Erik Karlsson’s leg. Chris Neil went after Matt Cooke later in the game. A crazy amount of time is spent breaking down and analyzing whether or not Cooke did it on purpose. Senators owner Eugene Melnyk was livid over it and claimed he was launching a forensic investigation to prove Cooke’s guilt.
You watch. It may be public. It may not be public, but it’s between me and the league. I think it was intentional, but you have to be able to prove it and from all the television angles that we saw, you can’t see it. It was so fast. But the force of that skate, [it] had to go in through a sock, a sub sock, then [Karlsson’s] skin, muscle, sheath and then get to [Karlsson’s] tendon … either this guy is very good or very lucky, to be able to do that. (Eugene Melnyk)
April 22, 2013 – A lot is made of this game between the Pens and Sens but not much happens. Zack Smith fights Robert Bortuzzo. Chris Neil levels Simon Despres. A contingent of Ottawa Senators held a “Hate Fest” for Matt Cooke.
(Credit Michael Burns/Red Scarf Union)
May 12, 2013 – Ottawa owner Eugene Melnyk takes to Twitter in advance of the series…
Some tweets we get from #Pens fans are profanity filled. That’s classless – it’s just a game. You are embarassing your city, team & players.
— Eugene Melnyk (@MelnykEugene) May 13, 2013