OTTAWA — Even though they’ll miss the playoffs for the first time in 13 years, the Ottawa Senators are having an impact on the postseason.
Mike Fisher scored on Ottawa’s fifth shootout attempt to give the Senators a 4-3 victory over the Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday night.
Fisher beat Antero Niittymaki after Ottawa captain Daniel Alfredsson also converted the Senators’ second attempt.
“It’s always nice to score like that,” Fisher said. “We didn’t quit. We got behind and (Jason) Spezza got a nice one to get back in it and that’s a pretty good team. I thought for the most part we battled pretty hard.”
Alex Auld turned aside Mike Richards, Simon Gagne, Jeff Carter and Claude Giroux after Daniel Briere was awarded a goal on Philadelphia’s first attempt, though only following a lengthy review that determined his shot crossed the goal line.
Niittymaki stopped 34 shots for Philadelphia, which won 8-5 in Toronto on Friday night after losing three of four.
“He played really well and was a big reason we picked up that point tonight,” said Darroll Powe, who scored on a penalty shot early in the second.
The Flyers, who have four games remaining, have 95 points and are tied for fourth in the Eastern Conference with Carolina, which has three games left to play.
“The good thing about the position that we’re in is we don’t really have to scoreboard-watch as long as we take advantage of the games that we have in hand,” Richards said. “Tonight would have been nice to get two points, but we still have a couple of games left to get home-ice advantage.”
Jason Spezza scored his 31st goal 3:47 into the third to draw Ottawa even at 3.
Nick Foligno and Chris Kelly also scored for the Senators, who held a 2-0 lead 2:26 into the second.
Powe scored on a penalty shot moments later for the first of three straight Philadelphia goals.
Richards scored his 30th goal to tied it at 2 on a power play midway through the second, and assisted on Gagne’s 33rd 28 seconds into the third that gave the Flyers a short-lived 3-2 lead.
The Senators took advantage of Carter’s turnover for the tying goal early in the third. Dany Heatley intercepted the Philadelphia center’s pass along the boards behind the Flyers’ net and passed to Spezza, who beat Niittymaki with a shot from the slot.
Spezza got his 40th assist midway through the first when he set up Foligno’s 17th goal on a two-man advantage.
Kelly increased Ottawa’s lead to two 2:26 into the second when he beat Antero Niittymaki on a breakaway.
Powe scored on a penalty shot at 2:58 to draw Philadelphia to 2-1. Powe cut from left to right and slipped a backhand under Auld’s pads at 2:58 after he was hauled down on a breakaway.
“That’s kind of been my go-to move since I can remember,” Powe said. “I just try to get speed and beat the goalie to the post and I managed to do that today. You don’t get many opportunities to do that so I just kind of had fun and enjoyed it.”
Richards tied it at 2 with his 30th goal on a power play at 10:46. The Flyers captain scored 3 seconds after Jarkko Ruutu was called for interference when he drove a slap shot from the right point past Auld after Briere won a faceoff.
Richards drew an assist on Gagne’s 33rd goal 28 seconds into the third that gave Philadelphia a 3-2 lead.
Daniel Carcillo was ejected midway through the first. The Philadelphia enforcer totaled 24 penalty minutes in the period, including an unsportsmanlike conduct minor, a misconduct and a game misconduct at 10:21, when Jeff Carter was called for hooking.
Carcillo got a boarding penalty 5:41 in for his hit on Filip Kuba. Ruutu got double roughing minors after he immediately came to his teammate’s defense, jumping on Carcillo and sliding on top of him across the ice.<
Notes: The Flyers have scored on three of six penalty shots this season, including both of Gagne’s attempts. Richards failed to score on his two penalty shots and Scott Hartnell also failed to convert his opportunity. … Powe’s penalty shot was the first called against Ottawa this season.