Mired in a 6 game losing streak (0-4-2) the Sens called up AHL scoring leader, and Twitter anointed savior, Corey Locke in addition to Lehner for a head to head tilt with fellow Eastern Conference cellar dwellers the New York Islanders.
Lehner wasn't spectacular in stopping 20 of the 24 shots that he faced and he looked a little shakey at times, especially during a 2 minute stretch in the 3rd period where he inexplicably failed to glove two easy shots and totally whiffed on a slow roller that just narrowly missed the yawning cage, but he played well enough to earn the win in his first start and that is much more than Sens current #1 Brian Elliott has been able to say lately.
Elliott has been terribly inconsistent in his 33 games this year posting a record of 12-15-5 to go along with a save percentage of .900 and a 40th ranked Goals Against Average of 3.09. But setting the stats aside for a minute, Elliott's biggest problem is that he has a habit of letting in at least one softie per game, not only does that put his team behind the proverbial 8ball, but it tends to suck the life out of a team that is having a terrible time putting the puck in the opposition's net.
The Sens believe that Lehner is the long awaited answer to their goal-tending woes and with this season all but done, I think that they would be well served by giving Lehner a solid look at the NHL level right now. They may as well see if he can handle NHL caliber shooters now as opposed to sending him back down to Bingo and waiting until next year. Sens management has some serious goal-tending decision to make over the summer with Pascal LeClaire becoming a UFA and Elliott being a RFA. If Lehner shows that he is ready to step up to the NHL level then Ottawa may only need to look for a solid veteran to help mentor Lehner along. If it looks like Lehner needs more seasoning at the AHL level, then Senators brass will have to look at someone who can carry the mail for an entire season or two.
The time is now to figure out whether or not Lehner is ready for the big dance and those are some more of Scott's Arbitrary Thoughts.