OTTAWA — If Loui Eriksson had any kind of luck, the Bruins would have pulled out of Canadian Tire Centre on Saturday with a 2-1 overtime win.
One minute into overtime, Eriksson slipped behind the Ottawa defense for a breakaway on Craig Anderson. As Eriksson approached, he tried to get Anderson to open the five-hole. Anderson slammed his paddle down on the ice and eliminated Eriksson's down-low look for the best of his 33 saves.
Then with a minute left in overtime, Eriksson fired a puck that pinged off the left post.
On the following counterattack, Mark Stone tucked home his own rebound to give the Senators the victory. The Bruins are 1-0-1 to start their five-game road trip.
"That's how it goes with three-on-three," Eriksson said. "There's a lot of chances. It's too bad that one didn't go in. Then they turn around and they get the game-winner."
At first, Tuukka Rask looked like he had stolen the Senators' wallets in overtime. Rask bricked up the net to stop an Erik Karlsson slap shot. Stone found the rebound, peeled around the net, and tried to stuff a wraparound home for the winner. Rask pushed to his right, jabbed out his stick, and stopped Stone's shot with his paddle.
The force of Stone's shot, however, caused Rask to drop his stick. Rask jabbed his glove skyward to snare Stone's follow-up bid. But Stone lifted the puck over Rask's glove and into the net with 37.5 seconds remaining in overtime.
"That's what fans want to see," Rask (38 saves) said of the up-and-down three-on-three rushes. "Scoring chances."
Had it not been for Rask's earlier brilliance, the Bruins may not have progressed to overtime and recorded the point. While his teammates grinded out a 4-1 win over New Jersey on Friday, Rask got a breather behind Jonas Gustavsson.
It was a good thing Rask was fresh against Ottawa. The Senators came out roaring against the legless Bruins and carried the pace early. Rask turned back 15 of 16 shots in the first. Several more pucks could have slipped through.
"I thought we had a bit of a slow start," said Bruins coach Claude Julien. "The first period wasn't the greatest for us. We had trouble getting our legs going. I didn't think we were supporting each other very well with the puck."
The Senators punched through at 13:28. Karlsson blocked a Colin Miller shot, then instantly went on the attack. Karlsson blew through the neutral zone with such acceleration that he suddenly had a two-on-one rush. After he drew Miller his way, Karlsson slipped the puck to Mika Zibanejad in the middle. Zibanejad pulled the puck to his backhand and beat Rask for the opening goal.
Rask shut it down otherwise. He went 9 for 9 in the second. He turned back nine more pucks in the third. Ottawa required the last of six OT shots to get the best of Rask.
Rask pulled out occasional acrobatics. But for the most part, Rask was a big, square goalie. He played his angles well. He challenged shots when necessary. After making first saves, Rask recovered to set himself up in the right spot to snuff out any secondary sniffs. As usual, Rask put on a technical clinic.
"There were times in the second period, they had some good opportunities there in the slot," Julien said. "I thought our guys did a good job of blocking shots as well. We had a lot of blocked shots in those dangerous areas tonight. It was a real commitment there as well. But he made the saves when he had to. Especially in the first period, he allowed us to get our legs going and keep us in the game."
The Bruins struck back in the opening minute of the second. The Senators had control of the puck along the boards in the defensive zone. Brad Marchand busted up the play by bursting into the battle and winning the puck.
Stone tried to clear the puck. But Marchand got a stick on Stone's blade and helped guide the puck to Patrice Bergeron. Once Bergeron got the puck, he gave it to Zdeno Chara at the left point. At the same time, David Pastrnak sliced into the high slot. When Chara's floater arrived, Pastrnak tipped the puck past Anderson at 0:41 to make it a 1-1 game. It was Pastrnak's first goal since Oct. 23.
The Bruins kept pushing. They came as close as they could get to winning on Eriksson's two bids.
"We got better," Julien said. "In overtime, I think it was pretty obvious that we had the better of the chances. They just needed that one and made the most of it."