Drake Batherson had a goal and an assist, and rookie Tim Stutzle and Connor Brown also scored as the Senators won the first of four straight games between the teams. It was Ottawa’s first win in the teams’ five meetings this season. Murray, who had 24 saves in a 4-0 win at Montreal last Saturday, won his third straight start to improve to 10-13-1. He now has 13 career shutouts. Thatcher Demko had 22 save in his first game back from Vancouver’s COVID-19 outbreak. He last played on March 24.
The teams meet Sunday again in Vancouver, then play in Ottawa on Monday and Wednesday nights.
Ottawa, last in the North Division, pulled one point behind Vancouver. The Canucks have seven games in hand.
Trailing 2-0, Vancouver pulled Demko for an extra attacker with three minutes to go but couldn’t beat Murray.
Brown sealed the win with an empty-netter with 90 seconds left on the clock.
Stutz was credited with the power-play goal that gave Ottawa a 1-0 lead 9:17 into the game when Nick Paul’s shot from the top of the left face-off circle hit the skate of the rookie as he leaped up in front of the net, pinging off the post and in.
Batherson made it 2-0 with a power-play marker before the end of the first. The puck trickled through the legs of Vancouver’s Tyler Myers, stationed at the top of the Canucks crease, and Batherson quickly pounced, firing it into the open net for his 16th of the season.
Josh Norris had an assist on the play, extending his point streak to six games with three goals and six assists in the stretch. Vancouver pressed in the second while outshooting the Senators 12-7. Murray made some big stops to preserve Ottawa’s lead, including a beautiful glove save on Quinn Hughes, where he snatched the puck out of the air. The Sens were 2 for 4 with the man advantage, scoring on the power play for the sixth straight game. The Canucks went 0 for 4.
There were lots of fireworks in the first period, prompting a flurry of whistles.
About five minutes in, Brady Tkachuk hit an unsuspecting Matthew Highmore at center-ice. Vancouver defenseman Travis Hamonic immediately jumped Tkachuk, who responded by dropping his gloves. The fisticuffs ended with Tkachuk in the box for fighting. And interference and Hamonic heading to the dressing room for instigating and fighting.
Hamonic’s penalty was initially called game misconduct, but he returned to the ice in the second period.
Canucks coach Travis Green said forward Antoine Roussel is expected to miss “a couple of weeks” after suffering a lower-body injury in Tuesday’s game with the Toronto Maple Leafs.
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