Good thing the Senators didn't have injured star Dany Heatley on Thursday night, or the trouncing they gave the Lightning might have been worse.
Instead, Ottawa mustered only an 8-4 rout at the St. Pete Times Forum that snapped Tampa Bay's three-game winning streak.
The good news: Defenseman Dan Boyle returned to the lineup after an almost 11-week recovery from a second surgery on his left wrist tendons and scored twice.
But other than Andre Roy's winning fight against former teammate Luke Richardson, the Lightning (20-25-5) had little else to show for the game.
Goalie Johan Holmqvist, who looked so strong in the three victories, was pulled in favor of Karrie Ramo after a first period in which he allowed three goals, two bad, on 14 shots.
Tampa Bay was outshot 14-4 in the first and fell behind 3-0.
The power play was 0-for-3 for the game and is 6-for-50 in its past 18 games.
Worst was how loose the Lightning was with the puck as turnovers and defensive mistakes led to most of Ottawa's goals.
Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson set a career high with seven points on three goals and four assists. It was the league's first seven-point game of the season.
The Lightning got goals in the third from Boyle, Nick Tarnasky and Craig MacDonald, who got his second of the season and second in as many games. But they were just window dressing in a sloppy period in which Ottawa also scored three.
The Senators dominated the first period, forechecked hard and forced mistakes in the Lightning zone. They scored their three goals in 4:58, two in 25 seconds.
Ottawa went ahead with 6:17 remaining when Alfredsson zipped a wrist shot past Holmqvist, who should have made the stop. But he got little help after Mathieu Darche lost the puck in the neutral zone.
It was 2-0 with 5:48 left on a strange goal by Jason Spezza, whose nothing shot from the high slot clipped Paul Ranger's stick and fluttered past the glove of a befuddled-looking Holmqvist. Go back further, though and you saw a turnover by Jason Ward.
Alfredsson struck again with 3:14 left on a five-on-three power play. Ranger didn't help with a weak clearing attempt from behind the Lightning goal line that was picked off in the Tampa Bay zone. Alfredsson's shot deflected in off the leg of Lightning defenseman Filip Kuba.
On the other hand, Tampa Bay was tentative in all phases, and no shots really tested goalie Martin Gerber.
Alfredsson made the score 4-0 and got the hat trick 4:38 into the second period at the end of a short-handed two-on-on with Mike Fisher, who started the play by stealing the puck from Brad Richards at the Senators blue line. It was Alfredsson's 32nd goal of the season.
Antoine Vermette's goal made it 5-0 with 9:36 remaining after he easily went around Kuba even as he was backing up in the Lightning zone.
Boyle, who had played just four games this season since a skate fell out of his locker on Sept. 22 and sliced three left wrist tendons, scored on his first shot of the game with 6:09 left.