OTTAWA - Jamie Langenbrunner scored twice Tuesday as the red-hot New Jersey Devils picked up where they left off before the NHL all-star break with a 4-1 victory over the Ottawa Senators.
Langenbrunner had the go-ahead goal in the second period and added an insurance marker early in the third to spur the Devils to a sixth straight win before a crowd of 18,786 at Scotiabank Place.
Patrik Elias and Brendan Shanahan also scored, while Scott Clemmensen made 21 saves for the Atlantic Division leaders.
Prior to the break, the Devils (30-15-3) had won six of their previous seven contests.
The Senators (16-22-7) had also fared well recently, with three wins in the past four games, while recording at least a point in each of those outings.
Earlier in the day, Senators owner Eugene Melnyk told reporters that, while his team's chances of making the playoffs looked bleak, he hadn't given up hope yet, even though he admitted it would take about 28 wins over the 38 remaining games to be in contention.
Alexandre Picard managed the lone goal for Ottawa, while rookie Brian Elliott stopped 23 shots.
Also Tuesday, the Senators announced that Martin Gerber had been assigned to Binghamton of the AHL after the 34-year-old goaltender cleared waivers last Friday.
Meanwhile, Danish centre Peter Regin was recalled from the AHL and defenceman Anton Volchenkov returned after missing the past eight games with an upper-body injury.
Elliott to make his sixth straight start in the Senators' goal.
He was beaten less than five minutes into the game when Brian Gionta broke down the right wing and threw the puck towards the Senators' goal with Elias charging hard. The puck appeared to bounce off Senators defenceman Brian Lee and in as he tried to prevent Elias from crashing the crease.
However after a review to make sure the puck wasn't kicked in, the goal stood as Elias' 21st of the season.
The score stayed 1-0 until just past the midway point of the second period when Picard fired a one-timer past Clemmensen with New Jersey's Bryce Salvador off for hooking. All six of Picard's goals this season have come on the power play.
Langenbrunner restored New Jersey's lead a few minutes later when he collected a shot off the end boards and banked the puck off Elliott and in.
Just 19 seconds into the third, Langenbrunner was at it again, collecting a nice backhand pass from Zach Parise and wristing in his 10th goal of the season.
Ottawa had a four-minute power play after Shanahan was called for high-sticking Daniel Alfredsson, but failed to muster a shot on goal, drawing boos from the home crowd.
Shanahan added his second goal in three games since signing with the Devils to finish off the scoring, snapping a shot past Elliott from the right faceoff circle.
Notes: Veteran Senators defenceman Jason Smith and fellow blue-liner Christoph Schubert were healthy scratches. ... Starting Thursday at St. Louis, Ottawa is on the road for the next three games, including stops in Columbus and Washington. ... Left-winger Jay Pandolfo was among the Devils' scratches. ... New Jersey faces another Northeast Division team Thursday when it travels to Boston.