OTTAWA – Mike Fisher was at his blue-collar best Saturday night and was rewarded with two power play goals that helped the Ottawa Senators to a 3-2 win over the Boston Bruins.
The sellout crowd of 19,929 at Scotiabank Place waited patiently as Boston netminder Tim Thomas did all he could to steal a victory for the Bruins, but power plays and old-fashioned hard work were the difference.
Fisher beat Thomas at 13:49 of the final period to break the 2-2 tie and send the Senators (11-1-0-0) to victory. They finished the night with three power play goals in five opportunities while the Bruins (7-5-0-0) were 0-for-1 with the man advantage.
Dany Heatley had a goal and an assist, while Joe Corvo contributed three assists. Martin Gerber made 17 saves to collect his league-leading eighth win of the season.
Chuck Kobasew had two second-period goals for the Bruins, but it was the work of Thomas that kept the score respectable as Ottawa held a 45-19 advantage in shots.
“We kept it pretty simple really. We got pucks to the net and told Fish just to plant himself there and he got a couple of big goals,” said Senators defenceman Wade Redden.
Both of Fisher’s goals came as a result of rebounds as he hung out in front of the Bruins net trying to make life difficult for Thomas.
He did just that.
“We’ve got smart players that can move the puck around and shoot, so it was just a matter of time I guess,” Fisher said about finally getting the winner past Thomas.
“(Thomas) made some good saves. We wanted make sure we were getting pucks to the net and using our speed. They’ve got some big D but we feel we’re a little bit quicker so if we could chip it in and get in behind them we could do a pretty good job.”
The Bruins pressed to tie the game in the final minute with Thomas on the bench for an extra skater, but an icing call forced Thomas back into the goal with 10 seconds to play, icing the win for the Senators.
“Timmy is the reason we stayed in the game, there’s no doubt about that,” said Bruins coach Claude Julien.
“He stood tall for us and gave us chance to get at least a point. Unfortunately penalties ended up costing us and that was disappointing.”
It took the Bruins less than five minutes into the second period to score twice and take a 2-1 lead. Kobasew scored his fourth and fifth goals of the season, his first coming at 1:04 as he took a pass from Zdeno Chara behind the net and stuffed a wraparound between Gerber and the post.
A little less than four minutes later Kobasew moved in from the point and found a rebound in the slot, which he blasted past Gerber to give the Bruins a brief lead.
Heatley scored the Senators second power play goal of the night when he took a hard cross-ice pass from Wade Redden and drilled a one-timer past Thomas.
“That was a great shot. The puck came around the wall and I had a little time. He had his stick up in the air ready so I just fired it to him and he made a great shot to beat (Thomas),” Redden said.
The Senators entered the second period with a 1-0 lead after Fisher scored his fourth goal of the season.
“They were throwing everything at me,” said Thomas.
“They had shots on the rush, passes from behind the net, slot shots, point shots. They did a pretty good job of mixing it up and throwing a little bit of everything our way.”
Notes: Boston coach Claude Julien coached his 250th NHL game Saturday night. … Mike Fisher’s first-period goal was the 200th point of his career. … The Senators are a perfect 11-0-0-0 on the season when they score first, and 0-1-0-0 when they don’t.