The game started shortly after 3 o'clock in Atlanta and by about 3:25 it appeared that the Ottawa Senators had left any New Years resolutions to keep on winning, back in the Canadian capital.
The return of Dany Heatley was not an enjoyable reunion for the player now in Senators colours as the Atlanta Thrashers handed the Sens a serious lesson on Monday afternoon.
From even before the game the situation for the Sens was tough, as Domenic Hasek (who was hooked up to a microphone which he forgot to turn off!) advised Sens backup Ray Emery that he was going to start just minutes before the game. Hasek hurt his back prior to the warm up and Emery was hurriedly put through the pre game paces to face the Thrashers.
Unfortunately for Emery, his team mates decided that the day after the New Year should be a stat holiday as the Thrashers out skated, out hit, out hustled and as the total of 8-3 shows out scored a Sens team that seemed to test the patience of head coach Bryan Murray.
Former Sen Marian Hossa acquired in the off season trade for Heatley gave the home side cause for celebration as he added two goals and an assist to the 8 goal total, with Vyacheslav Kozlov picking up three other goals while Ilya Kovalchuk and Serge Aubry picked up goals, as did Greg de Vries the oft forgotten part of the trade that rocked Atlanta.
Chris Neil and Chris Kelly put markers on the board for the Sens. Whiled Dany Heatley scored one goal for the Sens as well, to remind the folks in Georgia that he too can still score goals. But on this night he and his fellow Sens couldn't score enough of them to make a difference.
Emery had a rough night in the nets making only 19 saves on 27 shots, but while he did not have his best night, he certainly had lots of company on that bus. The Sens came out flat and never seemed to get their game into gear. The Thrashers full value for the thrashing on this night!