Ottawa: Ottawa’s Colin Greening hit a puck out of midair for a goal with 24 seconds remaining to give the Senators a 3-2 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday and keep them within two points of the NHL Eastern Conference lead.
Mika Zibanejad and Erik Condra also scored for the Senators, who have won four consecutive games.
Elsewhere, Montreal stayed on top of the East by beating the slumping New York Rangers while Detroit emphatically ended a five-game skid by routing Nashville. Dallas’ power-play got its act back together in the win over San Jose, Washington’s Alex Ovechkin had a hat trick in the victory against New Jersey and St Louis snapped a run of five straight home defeats by downing Columbus.
In Ottawa, Mikhail Grabovski and Clarke MacArthur scored for Toronto but it was to no avail thanks to Greening’s spectacular winner for the Senators.
They stayed right on the tail of the Montreal Canadiens, who defeated the New York Rangers 3-0.
Carey Price made 17 saves while each player on the line of Erik Cole, Alex Galchenyuk and Lars Eller scored a goal and added an assist for Montreal, who have won six of seven games. It was the Rangers third defeat in a row.
Detroit goalie Jimmy Howard made 33 saves for his first shutout of the season as the Red Wings cruised to a 4-0 win over the Nashville Predators.
Drew Miller scored an early goal for the Red Wings but given their recent habit of losing from 2-0 leads, they were happy to see Tomas Tatar’s goal early in the second period added to by Niklas Kronwall. Daniel Cleary added a fourth in the third period.
The Predators had won seven of eight games against Detroit, including last year’s first-round playoff series.
Dallas’ Jamie Benn scored a goal and added an assist as the Stars beat the San Jose Sharks 3-1. Jaromir Jagr and Michael Ryder also scored for Dallas, who ended an 0-for-16 power-play run and scored on consecutive opportunities to take a 2-0 lead early in the third period.
Patrick Marleau notched the only goal for San Jose, his 12th of the season, but the Sharks have won only one of their past nine.
Washington’s Alex Ovechkin produced his first hat trick in more than two years, leading the struggling Capitals to a 5-1 victory over the New Jersey Devils.
Ovechkin entered the game with only five goals in 16 games this season, but the two-time NHL MVP broke out in a big way.
Ilya Kovalchuk’s goal with 37.5 seconds left in the second period tied the game for New Jersey, but Ovechkin put Washington ahead 1:23 into the third.
St Louis David Perron scored the go-ahead goal midway through the third period to hand the Blues a 2-1 wn over the Columbus Blue Jackets.
Chris Stewart had a first-period goal for the Blues, who won their first game in six.
Goalie Jaroslav Halak made 18 saves, giving up his first goal at home in 168 minutes, 32 seconds on Matt Calvert’s short-handed tally late in the second.
Edmonton’s Jordan Eberle scored in regulation and in the shootout as the Oilers overcame a two-goal deficit to edge the Phoenix Coyotes 3-2.
Tampa Bay’s Steven Stamkos scored and had an assist in a four-goal third period that lifted the Lightning to a 5-2 win over the Carolina Hurricanes.
Philadelphia’s Wayne Simmonds scored a go-ahead goal about halfway through the third period and the Flyers went on to beat the Winnipeg Jets 5-3.
Los Angeles’ Dustin Brown and Jeff Carter scored first-period goals and Trevor Lewis added his first career short-handed goal as the Kings beat the Colorado Avalanche 4-1 for their third straight victory.
Calgary’s Matt Stajan scored twice, including the go-ahead goal, in the Flames 3-1 victory over the Minnesota Wild.
Evgeni Nabokov stopped 35 shots in the New York Islanders’ 4-0 win over the unravelling Buffalo Sabres, who were booed off the ice for a second consecutive home game.