OTTAWA - Despite the win, it certainly wasn't the way Kyle Turris and the Ottawa Senators wanted to end their pre-season.
Turris had four assists on Saturday as the Senators wrapped up the exhibition season with a 5-4 win over the Montreal Canadiens.
"There is lots we have to improve on. That game was sloppy, it was ugly at times and you want to finish better than that," said Turris. "We have to execute better, we have to be more crisp, there are lots of aspects we have to work on."
Mark Stone scored once and set up two more in the win, Mike Hoffman had a goal and an assist while Chris Neil, Chris Wideman and Cody Ceci chipped in a goal each.
Dale Weise, Alex Galchenyuk, Brendan Gallagher and Max Pacioretty supplied the goals for the Canadiens.
The game was the final pre-season affair for both clubs as they will now spend the next few days making final preparations for the regular season.
Neither club had their starting goaltenders in net. Dustin Tokarski took the loss for the Canadiens while Matt O'Connor got an unexpected start after being called up from the Binghamton Senators earlier in the week on an injury recall just hours after having been sent down.
"It was good. I got a lot of experience out there, got to see and NHL power play and I felt like I was seeing the puck well. I'm hoping to get to see some more action," said O'Connor, who was summoned after Andrew Hammond suffered a groin pull.
Ceci put the Senators ahead 5-3 in the third period before Pacioretty cut that lead to one goal with 40 seconds to play in regulation.
Stone had sent Ottawa into the second intermission with a 4-3 lead thanks to a power-play goal at 16:53 of the second period. It also allowed his side to breathe a little easier after they let a 3-1 lead after the first period slip away.
Trailing 3-1, Galchenyuk scored the Canadiens' second power-play goal of the game at 7:18 of the second period. A little less than four minutes later Gallagher tipped a puck past O'Connor from the side of the net to tie the game.
"We're moving the puck better," Gallagher said of the Canadiens' power play that went 2 for 4 Saturday.
"We didn't get off to a good start last year and it just built and built, so we're trying to get off to a good start and create more shots."
Ottawa beat Tokarski three times on just eight shots in the first period for a 3-1 lead after 20 minutes of action.
"I didn't play very good and It's unfortunate. I didn't get the bounces but you have to be accountable and I wasn't very good," Tokarski said.
"It's kind of a weird game. I look at the replay and it looks like it was easy (shot). There are definitely one or two I would like to have a better look at."
Neil opened the scoring as his slap shot found a way past Tokarski just 4:43 into the game.
Just ahead of the midway point of the period Weise tied the game with a power-play goal at 9:17, but just 19 seconds later the Senators reclaimed their one-goal advantage when Hoffman scored.
At 17:04 Wideman made the score 3-1 as Turris collected his third assist of the period on the goal.
Both teams open the regular season on the road with the Canadiens visiting the Toronto Maple Leafs on Wednesday while the Senators will be in Buffalo on Thursday to face the Sabres.
Notes: Tom Gilbert scored for the Canadiens in the mandatory five-minute 3-on-3 overtime period as teams test out the new format.