Predators slip past Senators 4-3 in OTNashville Predators' Craig Smith (15) celebrates his goal with teammates Colin Wilson (33), Mattias Ekholm (42), Seth Jones (3) and Eric Nystrom (24) during the second period of an NHL hockey game against the Ottawa Senators in Ottawa, Monday, March 10, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Fred Chartrand)
After overcoming a three-goal deficit, the Senators forced overtime only to watch it slip away when Jones scored the winner at 3:49 of the extra period and the Nashville Predators defeated the Senators 4-3 Monday night.
Ryan Ellis broke in alone on goaltender Robin Lehner and Jones was there to send home the loose puck.
''It was a tough one to slip away and we almost gave it away,'' Jones said. ''We need all the points we can get right now so it was nice to pull away with two.''
The win allowed the Predators to snap a four-game losing streak.
The Senators said they take solace in earning the single point, but at the same time know they need to be better if they hope to stay in the playoff race.
''The way the game was looking going into the third period it looked pretty bleak for us to get that one point so we'll take the positive,'' Ottawa's Marc Methot said. ''It would have been nice to get two, but we're happy with the resiliency we showed at the end.''
Nick Spaling, Craig Smith and Eric Nystrom also scored for Nashville. Pekka Rinne faced 37 shots. This was Rinne's first victory in four starts since returning from injury.
Jared Cowen, Methot and Jason Spezza scored for the Senators.
Craig Anderson allowed three goals on 29 shots before leaving the game early in the third. Lehner faced 13 shots in relief.
Senators coach Paul MacLean said he didn't have an immediate update on Anderson, but didn't believe it was anything serious.
Holding a 3-0 lead, the Predators nearly let the game slip away in the third as the Senators scored twice in a span of 2:39.
''I thought we played real well, especially the first two periods,'' Nashville's Mike Fisher said. ''We thought we were the better team, but then gave them a little life in the third and the crowd came alive for them and before you knew it, it was 3-3.''
Spezza tied the game with 67 seconds remaining in regulation. The newly acquired Ales Hemsky, who had three assists, found Spezza at the side of the net and the Senators' captain scored
''We knew we had to make a push in the third and it showed a lot of character for us to get a point,'' Spezza said. ''We kept coming and coming, but it sure would have been nice to pull that one out in overtime.''
The comeback started at 7:55 of the third, as Cowen was able to find the puck through traffic in front and push it past Rinne.
Spezza picked up his second assist of the night as he found Methot to make it a 3-2 game at 10:34.
The Predators' three second-period goals gave them a big early lead.
''We normally do a better job of locking these games down,'' Predators coach Barry Trotz said.
The goals against Anderson were the result of two redirections and a giveaway. Anderson's night came to an end at 4:10 of the third after he was hit in the head by teammate Milan Michalek.
On the first goal, Spaling tipped a Michael Del Zotto point shot at the 8:20 mark of the second.
Less than two minutes later, Colin Wilson won the faceoff in the Senators end and got the puck to Jones on the point. He then passed it to Mattias Ekholm, who took a shot that Smith re-directed in front.
The Predators made it 3-0 on Nystrom's unassisted goal. Methot went to clear the puck and it landed directly on Nystrom's stick for the easy finish on Anderson.
A scoreless first period was highlighted by the damage inflicted by Shea Weber's powerful shot.
First, Anderson dropped to the ice after taking a Weber shot in the shoulder and minutes later Cody Ceci took a shot to the head that left him with a lacerated right ear. He did not return to the game.
''You never want to see anyone go down like that,'' Weber said. ''Hopefully he's doing all right because that's nothing you ever want to see.''
Following the game Ceci tweeted, ''Thanks for all your concerns just a cut and a little shaken up should be back at it soon enough.''
Notes: The Senators were without LW Clarke MacArthur as he has a hand injury, but is expected to return for Saturday's game against Montreal. D Patrick Wiercioch, was a healthy scratch for the Senators. ... LW Gabriel Bourque and D Victor Bartley were healthy scratches for the Predators. ... The CIS Men's Basketball Champion Carleton Ravens were honored before the game and took part in the ceremonial puck drop.