Page last updated on Tue Dec 01 22:23:52 EST 2015
04/28/2013 11:45 PM EDT
Senators beat Bruins 4-2 to grab No. 7 seed

AP Sports Writer

BOSTON (AP) -- Ottawa Senators forward Daniel Alfredsson said
he's always wanted to face the Montreal Canadiens in the

Or was he just trying to avoid the top-seeded Pittsburgh

"We talked about mostly finishing better than last year,"
Alfredsson said after the Senators beat Boston 4-2 in the NHL's
rescheduled regular-season finale on Sunday night to earn the
No. 7 seed in the Eastern Conference.

"We were eighth last year, so to win here the last game and
finish seventh it feels really good. We improved on last year,
and that's what we wanted."

Jean-Gabriel Pageau scored the tiebreaking goal with 3:34 to
play, and Kyle Turris added an empty-netter to help Ottawa win
the game that was originally scheduled for April 15, the day of
the Boston Marathon bombings.

It was the only NHL game on Sunday, with the rest of the league
wrapping up the regular season by Saturday.

The victory pushed the Senators past the New York Islanders and
into seventh in the East, helping them avoid the Penguins in the
first round.

Ottawa opens the series in Montreal on Thursday.

"I think it will be a great series," Alfredsson said. "The Bell
Centre is one of the most exciting buildings to play in. It's a
great hockey town as well. ... I think it's going to be an
unbelievable atmosphere in both arenas, and I'm looking forward
to a hard-fought series."

The Islanders will face Pittsburgh in the first round. The
Bruins could have won the Northeast Division and earned a No. 2
seed with a win, but they finished fourth in the East and will
play Toronto in the first round starting Wednesday in Boston.

"We wanted to win tonight to clinch the division," Bruins
defenseman Johnny Boychuk said. "Now it doesn't matter. We have
to move forward for the playoffs."

Boston has not faced the Maple Leafs in the postseason since the
first round of the 1974 playoffs. It is the only matchup of
Original Six teams in the first round.

"You want to get the No. 2 spot, but at the end it doesn't
matter," said defenseman Dennis Seidenberg, who scored just 14
seconds into the third period to tie it 2-all.

"We still have home ice advantage in the first round, and the
first round is always the toughest one to get out of. Everything
else doesn't matter now."

Robin Lehner stopped 34 shots for the Senators, who had not
beaten Boston in their previous 14 tries.

Tuukka Rask made 18 saves for Boston, which had won two straight
division titles. He was pulled with about a minute left, but the
Bruins couldn't muster any pressure before Turris' empty-netter
with 37 seconds to play.

Pageau also assisted on Erik Condra's goal that made it 1-0 with
3 minutes left in the first period. Jared Cowen scored midway
through the second to give Ottawa a 2-0 lead.

But the Bruins scored twice in 18 seconds of clock time - on
Rich Peverley's goal with 3.4 seconds left in the second period
and again on Seidenberg's goal 14 seconds into the third.

It was still tied when Pageau swept a rebound past Rask to give
the Senators a 3-2 lead. The Bruins couldn't manage any pressure
with Rask pulled for the final minute, and Ottawa clinched on
Turris' empty-netter.

Notes: The Bruins handed out their regular-season awards before
the game: Patrice Bergeron was the recipient of the Eddie Shore
Award for hustle and determination and the Elizabeth Dufresne
Trophy for outstanding performance during home games. Gregory
Campbell earned the John P. Bucyk Award for off-ice charitable
contributions, and the three stars went to Tuukka Rask (first),
Bergeron (second) and Tyler Seguin (third). ... The rescheduled
game almost had to be bumped back when the Celtics' 1 p.m. game
went into overtime. But the Bull Gang got the basketball floor
off the ice in time for the 7 p.m. start. ... All four Northeast
Division teams to make the playoffs are facing each other. ...
The Senators have never faced Montreal in the playoffs since
joining the NHL in 1992.

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