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Ottawa Senators' Dion Phaneuf skates past the Toronto Maple Leafs bench during first period NHL hockey action in Toronto on Saturday March 5, 2016. (Chris Young/THE CANADIAN PRESS)
Ottawa Senators' Dion Phaneuf skates past the Toronto Maple Leafs bench during first period NHL hockey action in Toronto on Saturday March 5, 2016. (Chris Young/THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Smith lifts Senators over Maple Leafs 3-2 in Dion Phaneuf’s return to Toronto Add to ...

Zack Smith scored the winner as the Ottawa Senators kept their slim playoff hopes alive in Dion Phaneuf’s return to Toronto, defeating the Maple Leafs 3-2 on Saturday.

Smith re-directed a Mark Stone feed past Jonathan Bernier with 2:15 remaining in the third for his 17th of the season.

Ottawa (31-28-7) entered Saturday’s action 12th in the Eastern Conference, seven points out of the final wild card spot.

The Senators have now won three straight against the Maple Leafs, and avoided a third straight loss overall.

Bobby Ryan and Marc Methot had the other Ottawa goals, while Andrew Hammond picked up his fourth win of the season making 41 saves.

Rookies William Nylander and Nikita Soshnikov responded for the Leafs (21-33-10). Bernier stopped 28 shots in the loss.

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