Kyle Turris wore a wide smile.
The rest of Ottawa just breathed a big sigh of relief.
The Ottawa Senators served notice to the New York Rangers tonight at Scotiabank Place this first-round series is far from over as Turris' first goal of the series was the winner in a dramatic 3-2 OT victory
With the heat turned up on the Senators' best players to start chipping in, Turris took a pass from centre Jim O'Brien and beat Henrik Lundqvist with a snapshot high to the glove side at 2:42 to tie the series 2-2.
So, was it the biggest goal of his career?
"It's definitely up there. To score in the Stanley Cup playoffs, in overtime, is something that every kid dreams of," Turris told a throng of media around his stall.
He wasn't kidding. The Senators haven't done anything easy all season and this wasn't simple either. They were down 2-0 in the first period before people even had a chance to get warm in their seats. Then, had to battle back.
The Senators have shown all season they aren't the type of team that gives up when they're down. Sergei Gonchar tied it up on the power play and Milan Michalek opened the scoring in the second to bring Ottawa back to life.
"We've shown a lot of resilience all year," said centre Jason Spezza. "That's what we showed tonight. We got down by two goals and we showed our composure. We played good hockey after that.
"That's a testament to the way this team has been all year. We've gotten big goals from lots of different guys. That's playoff hockey."
It was a timeout in the second period, just moments after Michalek had scored at 7:04 to finally beat Lundqvist, that may have turned the tide in this game.Standing ovation
As the networks went to commercial, the goal-starved fans stood and cheered for the whole 70 seconds. The Ottawa players could feel the momentum shift taking place on the ice and wanted to capitalize on it.
"Once we got the first goal, our fans got behind us, and they made the building absolutely erupt," said goalie Craig Anderson, who made 31 stops. "It was a neat feeling. It boosted our morale right down the line.
"Our guys did a great job of responding with the momentum going forward and our fans put the pressure on. This is a hockey town and they showed it. Our fans helped us gain the energy we needed when we were a little bit flat."
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The Senators can expect a pushback from the Rangers. In a lot of ways, this series has only just begun.
"I don't think we played a bad game at all," said New York coach John Tortorella. "You're not going to get me to say there were a lot of bad things that went on in that game.
"I'm encouraged with the team. I thought we played better minutes tonight that in a lot of games.
It's frustrating to lose in overtime [again], but there's some good things."
The question is: Do the Senators have momentum?
"It doesn't matter how you get the results. It's unbelievable how every game is the biggest game even when you're not facing elimination," said Phillips. "To be tied up 2-2 and have a best-of-three instead of being down 3-1 is huge. That was just a huge win."
There's a lot of hockey left.