Jason Spezza scored the game-winner, but in his 1,000th career game, defensive-defenseman Chris Phillips also contributed in a big way, scoring his first two goals of the season to help the Ottawa Senators beat the Nashville Predators, 4-3. The win was huge for Ottawa, as it kept the Sens in playoff standing, holding the seventh seed, jumping ahead of the Toronto Maple Leafs, who lost in Philadelphia Thursday night.
After Spezza and Gabriel Bourque traded goals for their teams in the first, the Senators regained the lead as Phillips put in his first goal on a three-on-two. Patric Hornqvist used the Preds' second power play opportunity to tie the game up again, but Spezza struck again on Ottawa's own man-advantage to go up, 3-2.
The magical moment where Phillips got his second goal, the Senators were on another power play, and after some sustained pressure, Pekka Rinne made a rare mistake in allowing a rebound for the even-rarer two-goal game for Phillips. Phillips' elation was priceless:
With Rinne pulled, Martin Erat scored with 8.6 seconds to go, but it was too late, as the Senators were able to enjoy a 4-3 win.
This game was Alex Auld's first start since Dec. 16 when Ottawa defeated the Pittsburgh Penguins, 6-4. While Craig Anderson has kept the Senators relevant all season, Ottawa was on a seven-game winless streak and Anderson probably needed the break.