Hughes seals SO win, Devils beat Senators 4-3
Hughes, who sealed the win in the second round of the shootout, scored the overtime winner when the teams met here Dec. 29.
“It was exciting to help the team win,” Hughes said. "That's a good comeback win for us. And not just take one point but take (two). ... It was important for us to come back and get that win."
“I thought in general it was a really good effort,” Devils interim coach Alain Nasreddine said. “Obviously not exactly how we drew it up at the end, but we’ve talked about resiliency now for a while. At 3-2 it wasn’t a good way to go down, but the guys found a way and tied it up and found a way to get two points in the end. It was a great effort.”
Tyler Ennis, Vladislav Namestnikov and Chris Tierney scored for Ottawa. Marcus Hogberg had 50 saves through overtime, but gave up two goals on two shots in the tiebreaker.
The Senators trailed 2-1 heading into the third before scoring two short-handed goals in a span of 35 seconds to take the lead,
Namestnikov tied it 2-2 with a quick wrist shot at 9:06, and Tierney then gave Ottawa its first lead of the game.
“When we took the lead we had a lot of momentum, especially with two short-handed goals,” Tierney saud. “It’s tough to give up one late there, but you’ve got to find a way to get the extra point sometimes.”
Palmieri tied it again with 3:21 left. Jesper Bratt was able to grab a loose puck in the crease and got it to Palmieri, who quickly put it past Hogberg.
“I can do better on the third goal,” Hogberg said. “I wish I could have held on to the puck on the third one, but we battled hard out there and I like how we played.”
The Devils had the better chances in overtime but Hogberg stopped all four shots.
Ottawa’s rookie goaltender has been outstanding of late, but has just two wins to his credit.
“It’s tough because it seems so many time’s he stands on his head and we can’t get him that extra point,” Tierney said. “It feels like he’s giving us a chance to win every night and we’re just not picking up a couple extra points. Hopefully he can keep playing that way and we can find ways to win.”
A game between the 28th- and 29th-place teams didn't lack intensity as Ottawa’s Brady Tkachuk and New Jersey’s P.K. Subban went at it. The two got under each other’s skin early in the first period and finally dropped the gloves early in the second. The two continued to rile one another in the penalty box.
New Jersey opened the scoring at 8:23 of the first period with a power-play goal that Hogberg misplayed. Severson’s point shot rang off the post and hit Hogberg’s skate and he inadvertently pushed it across the goal line.
Ottawa tied it with 1:18 left in the period as Tkachuk redirected a point shot to Ennis, who beat Blackwood with a quick shot.
“We worked in spurts,” Senators coach D. J. Smith said. “I don’t think we had enough guys play their best game."
Rooney’s wraparound goal at 4:28 of the second gave New Jersey a 2-1 lead.
NOTES: Ottawa’s Mark Borowiecki had a scary moment in the third when Blake Coleman’s stick caught him right below the eye. The Senators’ defenseman immediately left the ice, but was back shortly after. ... The teams were playing their first game in nine days following the bye week and All-Star break. ... Ottawa F Jean-Gabriel Pageau returned to the lineup after having missed the last two games before the break with a sore neck. ... Connor Carrick was a healthy scratch for the Devils. ... There was a moment of silence in honor of Kobe Bryant and eight others killed in a helicopter crash Sunday morning.
Devils: Host Nashville on Thursday night to open a three-game homestand.
Senators: At Buffalo on Tuesday night.