The Maple Leafs should have felt right at home at the Canadian Tire Centre with most of a season-high crowd of 18,607 cheering for them.
Trailing 4-1 to start the third, Toronto caught a break when both Zack Smith and Mark Borowiecki took minor penalties, giving the Leafs a 2-minute, two-man advantage. Tavares managed to score to cut the lead in half at 5:13, with just 14 seconds remaining on the power play.
Ottawa regained its three-goal lead as Duclair tracked a shot off the back boards and slid it past Sparks at 8:36.
Lindberg capped the scoring with 5:39 left.
Ceci got the Senators on the scoreboard first with his sixth of the season 6:36 into the game. Christian Wolanin saw Ceci trailing and he wristed a shot past Sparks from the circle. Ottawa-born rookie Max Veronneau picked up his first NHL point on the play in his second game.
The Senators took control in the second period.
Gibbons jumped on Dylan DeMelo’s rebound and went to his backhand as he fell to make it 2-0 at 6:48 of the middle period.
Rielly cut Toronto’s deficit in half as he put a shot over Nilsson’s right shoulder for his 20th with 7:27 left.
Paajarvi scored his first of two goals on a wrist shot off a pass from Rudolfs Balcers with 6:09 remaining in the second. Paajarvi then made it 4-1 with a wrist shot past Sparks for his ninth with 1:10 to go.
NOTES: Ottawa’s Bobby Ryan played his 800th NHL career game, while DeMelo played in his 200th. … Senators F Colin White missed his third straight game with a neck injury. … Nic Petan and Igor Ozhiganov were out for Toronto.
Maple Leafs: At Nashville on Tuesday night.
Senators: At Vancouver on Wednesday night to open a three-game trip to western Canada.