The Senators came out of this game needing one point to clinch a playoff spot, but instead they walked out with two points and their sixth straight win. It wasn't pretty -- the Senators looked out of sync for most of the second half of the game and turned the puck over frequently -- but the Senators managed to win in a game with a little bit of everything. Anton Volchenkov got the game's first goal, but the Hurricanes finished the second period up 2-1. It was 3-2 for the Canes with only seconds left, but Jason Spezza won a key faceoff cleanly to Erik Karlsson, who scored to push the game into overtime. 5 minutes was not enough to decide the game, and Alex Kovalev and Jason Spezza scored in the shootout to give the Senators the 4-3 win.
Sens Heroes: Jason Spezza, Erik Karlsson, Peter Regin
The three hottest players during the Ottawa Senators current win streak were lighting the lamp again tonight, combining for seven points on the night. Jason Spezza assisted on all three goals during regulation, and also scored on a beautiful deke in the shootout to put the game away. He finished +3 on the night, and now has 11 points in his last 4 games.
Karlsson had a couple of defensive lapses but more than made up for it with two huge goals, none bigger than the one that came with Brian Elliott pulled and less than 8 seconds on the clock. That's 7 points in 3 games for the young Swedish rookie.
Peter Regin had two assists on the night, 4 shots on goal, finished +3, and continues to impress in his position on the top line.
Sens Zeroes: Mike Fisher
Fisher never seemed to be comfortable with the puck but still held on to it too long. He finished -1 and was only 42% in the faceoff circle. It wasn't a terrible night, by any means, but Fisher has to contribute more than he did tonight.
Sens Killer: Brandon Sutter
Sutter had a goal tonight, but he also seemed to constantly find himself in great scoring chances. He was a very dangerous player tonight, arguably the best in a Canes jersey.
Stat o' the Night
Ottawa had 18 giveaways on the night, compared to Carolina's 8. That's an unacceptable number come playoff time, and the Senators are just lucky that they somehow came out of it with the win.
What About Bob?
The newest Ottawa Senator, Bobby Butler, made his NHL debut tonight. He was paired with Nick Foligno and Jesse Winchester, and though it took him a while to get comfortable on the big stage, once he did he looked great. He had one of the strongest third periods of any Ottawa Senator, and showed some good wheels and a very strong shot. He even drew a penalty near the end of the third because of his hard work on the boards. He certainly needs to add more strength to play consistently at the NHL level, but he had a solid game.