Next time Craig Anderson is in a slump, he might want to try losing his stick.

And next time somebody makes fun of hockey players for warming up with a soccer ball, well, just tell them the Colin Greening story.

Greening scored what proved to be the winner in a very much needed, 4-2 Senators victory over the Florida Panthers at BB&T Center Tuesday night — and he did so with a move that would have made Cristiano Ronaldo proud.

The Senators were on a power play in the last minute of the second period when Joe Corvo fired a wrist shot from the point that was heading towards Greening as he battled for position in front. Instinctively, the big winger raised his left leg. The puck hit him just under the knee, popped straight up in the air and floated in slow motion over goalie Tim Thomas’ head before rolling over the goal line.

The play was reviewed to determine if Greening kicked in it before being ruled a good goal.

“I thought (Thomas) was going to put a block on it, and I tried to position myself so the puck would come out and hit me. Luckily it just hit my knee, and I saw it go up and flutter in the air.”

So it was not a planned re-direct?

“No, I’m not that good of a soccer player,” he said.

Bobby Ryan added his 14th of the season in the third period, on a setup by Jared Cowen, to seal things.

Corvo also scored to give him a two-point night, while Erik Condra had the other Senators goal. Clarke MacArthur added two assists.

“Obviously this was a real important, focused game for us, to try and get things back on track,” said Corvo. “Just play simple, and get a greasy road win.”

The win allowed the Senators to move to within five points of the Toronto Maple Leafs for the last wildcard spot in the Eastern Conference.

The Senators would have never been in position to get there had Anderson not been able to recover from a shaky start.

After allowing a couple of goals early in the first on shots he probably would have stopped last year, Anderson was given a reprieve as the Senators tied the game on goals by goals by Corvo and Erik Condra.

In between the Corvo and Condra goals, on a series that saw him lose his goalie stick, Anderson made spectacular pad saves on Scottie Upshall and Nick Bjugstad to keep the game knotted going into the first intermission.

From there, Anderson resembled his old self, stopping everything else that came his way.

“It’s one of those things where you’re definitely at a disadvantage. Sometimes the forwards want to give you a stick, and they’re better off having a stick than I am. You just try to make due, and you battle your way to make saves.”