OTTAWA - As captain Daniel Alfredsson says, the Ottawa Senators don't have "a lot to complain about right now."
Alfredsson scored into an empty net to secure a 4-2 victory over the New Jersey Devils Monday afternoon at Scotiabank Place. Wade Redden scored the eventual winner as the Senators kept their perfect record intact with a 4-2 win over the New Jersey Devils.
Chris Kelly and Dany Heatley also scored for the Senators (4-0-0), who got 27 saves from goalie Martin Gerber. Jason Spezza had three assists while Alfredsson had two.
Aaron Asham and Zach Parise were the New Jersey goal-scorers, while Martin Brodeur made 33 saves in a losing effort.
"We're obviously very happy to start this way. We knew we had six games in the first eight days and knew if we could come out with a good record there we'd be off to a good start," said Alfredsson, who has scored in all four games and has five on the season.
The Senators also went 7-0-0 in the pre-season
"The good thing about this moment is that we're playing a lot of games and you don't have time to think or rest too long on your laurels," said Senators coach John Paddock.
"We're in a stretch where we play a game, have a short practice then get on a plane and play. I think is two points is two points and you get as many as you can now because at some point there's going to be a dry spell."
The Devils (1-2-0) started off strong as they hemmed the Senators into their own end during the opening minutes, but afterwards it was the Senators who dictated the play, outshooting the Devils 37-29.
The Senators also killed off the only Devils power play to improve to a perfect 21-for-21 on the penalty kill this season.
"I think the core of the PK unit was doing well at the end of last year and especially in the playoffs," said veteran blueliner Luke Richardson, who is in his first year with the Senators.
"I think the confidence has rolled over and in net behind you, Marty Gerber has played great. That gives you the confidence when you know the guy behind you is there to make the save on that point-blank shot and you can take care of the rest."
The video judge was as busy as anyone in the third period as two of the goals scored during the frame were decided off a TV monitor. The third was the empty-net goal by Alfredsson.
Redden scored the first contested goal when he slid his own rebound under Brodeur about five centimetres past the goal line at 5:33.
Less than two minutes later it was Parise who forced a video review when his shot barely crossed the line behind Gerber in the Senators goal.
Kelly and Heatley had provided the Senators with a 2-0 first-period lead.
Kelly scored 4:37 into the game when his shot from the slot went through a pile up in front of the net and over Brodeur's shoulder.
The Senators doubled the lead at 15:16 of the period when Jason Spezza tipped a pass from Alfredsson and Heatley forced a shot through Brodeur.
In the second period the Devils rode the goaltending of Brodeur and waited for their opportunities.
One finally came late in the period when Asham slid the puck past Gerber just inside the far post to cut the Senators lead to 2-1.
That goal ended Gerber's shutout streak at 122 minutes one second. The last goal he had allowed was late in the second period against the Toronto Maple Leafs in the second game of the season.
"The last two periods we played very well and that's the way we want to play from our goaltender on out," said Devils coach Brent Sutter.
"It's tough to win when you only play two periods and the worst part about it, that period we don't play well, we don't even give ourselves a chance because we're not doing anything right. You can't wait for something bad to happen to react. You have to initiate."
Notes: The Devils have recorded 40-plus wins in each of the past 10 seasons which is the longest current stretch in the NHL. . . . The Devils current nine-game road trip to start the season ties the longest in NHL history. . . . The Senators outshot their opposition for the first time this season. . . . The crowd of 18,260 at Scotiabank Place ended the Senators consecutive sellout streak at 22 games, including the playoffs.