Zero Hero saves Sens

BRUCE GARRIOCH

, Last Updated: 8:52 AM ET

Just call Ray Emery the new "Zero Hero."

For the second straight game, the Senators goaltender didn't allow anything to get past him as he stopped 27 shots in a 1-0 victory over the New York Rangers in front of a holiday crowd of 20,214 last night at Scotiabank Place.

"I felt good," said Emery. "I got to see everything and the guys did a good job clearing guys out."

While the Senators were banged up -- playing without top centres Mike Fisher and Jason Spezza (both sidelined with knee injuries) -- captain Daniel Alfredsson scored to help the club extend its winning streak to three.

How hot is Emery? Coming off a 2-0 shutout over the New York Islanders on Wednesday, he hasn't allowed a goal in 131:07 and needed to make some big stops as the Senators took an early 1-0 lead, but weren't able to cash in on any more chances on Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist.

'THE LAST LINE'

"Ray was the last line and he made some big saves to help us hold on for that win," said defenceman Wade Redden. "He's really been huge and a big reason we've had success."

How thin are the Senators in the middle? The club didn't have a natural centre on the No. 1 unit on the power play. Instead, Alfredsson, Heatley and Patrick Eaves were used up front along with Chris Neil.

"Score early and play defence," Senators coach Bryan Murray said of the recipe to victory. "Our guys came out very prepared to play, very committed. I thought everyone really bought in. It shows what teamwork does."

Chris Kelly took a regular shift between Dany Heatley and Alfredsson because of the injuries and the Senators did a solid job defensively.

When Ottawa did give up chances, Emery was able to stand tall.

Murray has been hammering home the point the Senators have to play well in their own end if they're going to stand a chance of winning.

Jaromir Jagr was so frustrated at one point he was seen having an animated discussion with his teammates on the New York bench.

Given the circumstances, the Senators talked about getting off to a strong start.

They wanted to limit the Rangers' chances by slowing them down and making sure Emery saw everything.

Well, Emery almost didn't see anything at all early in the game. The Senators had their skating legs, stayed in the Rangers' faces and didn't give up a shot until 10:13 of the first.

It was Alfredsson who opened the scoring only 32 seconds into the first. He tipped a Chris Phillips shot from the point through Lundqvist's five hole to give the club a momentum boost.

The Senators had to dodge one bullet. Neil was given a five-minute major at 16:25 of the first when he slammed New York's Peter Prucha into the boards.

There was a scary moment when Neil had to be helped off the ice with only 30 seconds left in the second period. He appeared to lock legs with Rangers defenceman Darius Kasparaitis and needed assistance getting to the club's dressing room, but returned to play in the third.


Videos

Photos