MONTREAL - Dany Heatley scored the tying and winning goals in a span of 38 seconds midway through the third period Monday to lead the Ottawa Senators to a 3-2 over a Montreal Canadiens team dealing with the loss of two of its top defencemen.
Chris Campoli also scored and Alex Auld made 20 saves for the Senators (35-34-10), who won their second straight after losing four of their previous five games.
Alex Kovalev and Roman Hamrlik scored and Jaroslav Halak made 20 saves for the Canadiens (41-28-10), who lost in regulation for the first time in seven games and missed a chance to jump into sixth in the Eastern Conference standings.
The Canadiens remained in seventh place with 92 points, one point behind the Pittsburgh Penguins and three points up on the New York Rangers and Florida Panthers.
Reports emerged just prior to game time that Canadiens defencemen Andrei Markov and Mathieu Schneider would miss significant time with injuries, which could be a massive blow to the team's playoff hopes.
Markov will miss three weeks with what appears to be a knee injury while Schneider will undergo season-ending shoulder surgery, several media sources reported prior to the game.
The injuries forced Canadiens head coach/GM Bob Gainey to dress Ryan O'Byrne and Doug Janik, who made his Habs debut after being called up Monday morning from Hamilton of the American Hockey League.
The Canadiens power play was 13-for-35 in the previous six games with Markov and Schneider manning the points.
Hamrlik and Patrice Brisebois took their place Monday but they weren't nearly as effective as the Canadiens power play was shut out on three opportunities after scoring in six straight games.
With the Canadiens up 2-1 midway through the third, Heatley led the Senators to victory.
Mike Fisher corralled a loose puck at the side of the Canadiens net and saw Heatley in front surrounded by three Canadiens, but Heatley still converted the feed at 11:23.
On the ensuing shift, Kovalev just missed giving the Canadiens back the lead when he tipped a pass off the inside of the post. As the puck moved back toward the Canadiens end Jesse Winchester took Janik out with a hit in the neutral zone to give Heatley the space to score his 37th goal at 12:01.
The Senators opened the scoring on the power play at 10:56 of the second when Nick Foligno feathered a nice backhand pass to Campoli on a backdoor rush for the defenceman's 11th of the season.
Kovalev tied it at 12:46 when he took a Saku Koivu pass and sent a wrist shot past Auld. Kovalev - named the NHL's first star for last week - now has eight goals and eight assists in his last seven games.
Hamrlik put Montreal ahead 2-1 with 3.8 seconds left in the second when he put his long shot under Auld's glove.
Notes: Wingers Andrei Kostitsyn and Matt D'Agostini were healthy scratches for Montreal, while winger Shean Donovan was scratched for the Sens ... Canadiens D Patrice Brisebois was honoured prior to the contest for playing his 1,000th career NHL game on March 14. NHL senior vice-president Steve Hatze Petros was on hand to present a crystal trophy from the league, while Canadiens Hall-of-Famer Henri Richard presented Brisebois with a silver stick on behalf of the team. ... The Canadiens will also make a $10,000 donation to Ste-Justine Hospital on Brisebois' behalf Christopher Higgins was awarded a penalty shot at 19:08 of the first period when he was tripped by Auld with an open net, but Higgins couldn't score on the penalty shot. It was the third straight game the Canadiens were awarded a penalty shot, a first in team history. None of the three Canadiens shooters managed to score.