Senators Win Ninth Straight, Top Canadiens 3-2 in Overtime

OTTAWA — Mike Fisher had room to operate and took full advantage of the rare 3-on-3 situation.

Fisher scored 3:33 into the extra period and Ottawa extended its winning streak to a team-record nine in a row with a 3-2 victory over the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday.

Fisher took a pass from defenseman Erik Karlsson and cut across the goalmouth to put a backhand past Jaroslav Halak.

"Yeah, you don't see it too often, that's for sure," Fisher said. "I went in with speed and it was a great play by Karlsson. It was his play."

Montreal's Hal Gill was penalized for tripping 2:17 into overtime after he upended Jason Spezza on a partial breakaway. Spezza, who gave Ottawa a 2-0 lead midway through the second, was sent off for interference at 3:12.

"Three-on-three, I want to be out there, so it was nice to see Fishy get the breakaway," Spezza said.

Ottawa had lost five in a row prior to its record winning streak. The Senators' previous mark was an eight-game winning streak from Oct. 13-Nov. 6, 2007 in the wake of the team's run to the Stanley Cup final the previous spring.

"They're pretty different," said Ottawa center Chris Kelly, who was part of both winning streaks. "The streak we had before was after the Cup run and I think we came back with something to prove after a short summer. We were rolling on a pretty big high whereas we lost five in a row before this little streak."

Brian Elliott stopped 27 shots to win his seventh straight start. He has allowed eight goals during his streak.

Brian Gionta scored on a power play to draw Montreal even at 2 with 2:45 remaining in regulation.

With Kelly off for high-sticking, Gionta was in the goalmouth to redirect Andrei Markov's pass beyond Brian Elliott for his 14th goal.

Both Kelly and Elliott were elated — and relieved — after Fisher delivered the winning goal. The Senators goalie had company as he raced the length of the ice to join the victory celebration.

"I think if you see the replay, I'm the first guy off the bench, jumping in the pile," Kelly said. "I was pretty happy."

Alex Kovalev scored his 14th goal late in the first and Spezza scored for a sixth straight game on a power play midway through the second. Filip Kuba assisted on both goals.

Benoit Pouliot scored a power-play goal for Montreal, which has dropped six of eight (2-4-2), including losses in Florida and Tampa Bay on consecutive nights earlier in the week.

"It's disappointing, for sure," Pouliot said. "You can't fall behind by one or two at the start of every game and expect to come back all the time, that's tough. We showed some character and we come back to tie it 2-2 at the end of the period. The power play did well and it's just too bad that we couldn't get a second point."

Halak made 34 saves, including a huge stop on Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson's shot on a 2-on-1 with less than 1 minute left in the third.

Ottawa left wing Nick Foligno broke his right leg when he was struck by a slap shot from Canadiens defenseman Marc-Andre Bergeron with about 6 minutes remaining in regulation. Foligno left and did not return.

A team spokesman said he would be sidelined for six to eight weeks.

Mike Cammalleri, Montreal's leading goal scorer with 26, had left moments earlier after he was checked by Ottawa defenseman Anton Volchenkov and fell heavily into the boards. He did not return.

The Senators have won four of five meetings between the teams this season.

Elliott, who lost 4-1 to Montreal on Dec. 8, became the third Ottawa goalie to beat the Canadiens this season. Pascal Leclaire, currently recovering from a concussion, won both his starts against Montreal and Mike Brodeur got the decision in a 4-2 victory at the Bell Centre on Jan. 16, the Senators' second win of their current streak.

Kovalev, who played for Montreal from 2003-09 before signing with Ottawa as a free agent, opened the scoring late in a freewheeling and entertaining first period.

Booed by the numerous Canadiens fans in attendance whenever he handled the puck in the opening period, Kovalev tapped home Kuba's cross-ice pass at the edge of the right crease to put the Senators up 1-0 at 17:21.

Spezza extended his personal-best goals streak to six games 11:37 into the second when he deflected Kuba's shot past Halak to increase Ottawa's lead to 2-0.

Pouliot drew Montreal within one with his 13th goal at 15:17.

The 1992-93 Pittsburgh Penguins hold the NHL single season record with a 17-game winning streak from March 9-April 10, 1993. … The Senators have outscored their opponents 30-10 over the course of their streak. … Canadiens D Jaroslav Spacek (upper-body injury) was sidelined for a second straight game. D Yannick Weber took his place in the lineup one day after he was recalled from Hamilton of the AHL.

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