Senators end three-game, post-Olympic skid
EDMONTON, Alberta (AP)
The Ottawa Senators' post-Olympic misery is over.
Chris Kelly had a goal and an assist, and Matt Cullen, Milan Michalek and Mike Fisher also scored for the Senators, who snapped a three-game losing streak with a 4-1 victory over the Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday night.
The Senators scored three times in the third period, matching their total during their post-Olympics skid.
"We got some goals in a flood at the end there and it was nice to get the run support,'' goalie Brian Elliott said. "We've lost a couple, so a win like this lifts the spirits."
Daniel Alfredsson added three assists.
"We didn't play well the first two games after the Olympics but we had a gutsy effort to build from in our last one with a bunch of guys sick,'' he said. "That carried into tonight. I thought we played a strong game. The biggest thing was having a strong effort and getting the power play going in the third.''
Fernando Pisani had the lone goal for the Oilers, whose two-game winning streak ended. Edmonton, which owns the NHL worst record, is six points behind Toronto.
"Playing like that is what got us in trouble lots of other nights," Oilers coach Pat Quinn said. "We had a lot of turnovers, and when you are a chaser you never establish the forecheck and spend lots of time in your own zone.
"When your forwards play the way ours did it puts a lot of pressure on your goaltender and defense. We didn't win any battles. It would be hard to give any one of our forwards a good grade."
The Senators, who outshot Edmonton 39-19, had the bulk of the early scoring opportunities, but Oilers goalie Jeff Deslauriers stood tall. He helped killed a two-man Ottawa advantage when he stopped Alex Kovalev and Michalek.
Edmonton's best chance of the first came with just over two minutes left when Brian Lee hauled down Mike Comrie. The Oilers forward was awarded a penalty shot, but Elliott made the save to keep the game scoreless.
"I know Mike from being in Ottawa and he is a little trickster," Elliott said. "He got a good shot but I got it with my stick."
Ottawa looked to have broken the deadlock with just 45 seconds remaining in the period. Fisher banked a shot off the skate of defender Taylor Chorney, but Deslauriers dove across to smother the puck.
The Oilers got on the board at 4:27 of the second. Elliott allowed a big rebound on Aaron Johnson's point shot and Pisani lifted the puck up and over the sprawling netminder for his third goal.
The Senators finally got one past Deslauriers at 16:18 when Kelly took a bad angle shot that got between the pads and the post to make it 1-1 after 40 minutes.
Ottawa took its first lead 8 minutes into the third. Cullen fired a shot from the point on the power play for this 14th of the season.
The Senators made it 3-1 less than two minutes later. Fisher stole the puck in the Oilers' zone and slid it past Deslauriers.
Ottawa put the game away at 13:09 when Michalek scored during a 5-on-3 advantage.
NOTES: It was the second and final meeting between the teams this season. Ottawa earned a 4-3 win over Edmonton in November and has won six straight against the Oilers. ... Edmonton forward Patrick O'Sullivan left the game because of a left hand injury in the first period and didn't return. ... The Senators, who have been badly hit by the flu recently, had Alfredsson and Peter Regin back in the lineup. ... Ottawa forward Nick Foligno, who broke his right leg in February, is skating. He could rejoin the Senators during their Western Canadian road trip. ... Senators D Filip Kuba (lower body) didn't travel with the team. ... Edmonton G Nikolai Khabibulin (back surgery) said he won't return this season, but that recovery is going well.