Photo: Ryan Remiorz, The canadian Press
Paul Byron beat Andrei Vasilevskiy with a shot in the upper right.
It took the visit to the Bell Centre the best team in the national hockey League for the players of the Montreal canadiens show what wood they can warm themselves when they really have the money.
Paul Byron scored in the shootout to give the Canadian a spectacular victory of 2-1 to the Tampa Bay Lightning Thursday night at the Bell Centre.
First shooter to run, Byron beat Andrei Vasilevskiy with a shot in the upper right. Jonathan Drouin and Max Pacioretty were unable to emulate their team-mate, but Carey Price did the rest by standing in front of Brayden Point, Nikita Kucherov and Steven Stamkos.
“It is very fast and very good on the shots down. He challenged me and I was able to locate the puck above his blocker pad “, was described by Byron.
Earlier in the meeting, Pacioretty had put an end to the lethargy of thirteen games by scoring his ninth goal of the season. The captain of the Canadian hadn’t hit the target since November 30, in Detroit. Worse still, his last goal at the Bell Centre dating back to November 11, in the face of the Sabres of Buffalo.
Its purpose has also put an end to the period of invincibility of Vasilevskiy, who didn’t concede a goal in 184 minutes 49 seconds. Vasilevskiy had failed for the last time in front of Brendan Gallagher last Thursday in Tampa.
Kucherov, in which the word scarcity does not appear to be part of the vocabulary, donned his 26th goal of the season. Already holder of the first rank among the markers of the NHL, Kucherov took the opportunity to join Alexander Ovechkin at the top of the ranking of the best scorers in the circuit Bettman.
Distressing attack on Tuesday night, the Habs delivered a much better effort in the face of the cream of the national League. But more often, it is met with Vasilevskiy, the keeper of the time at the moment in the NHL.
Vasilevskiy has blocked 37 shots, including a good number highly dangerous.
At the other end, Price has delivered another solid performance as he faced 45 shots. It has kept its most beautiful stops of the match to the extension, including the steering wheel of the goals some of Tyler Johnson and Ondrej Palat, blow on blow. Two real jewels.
“I was looking to make the first stop. I found myself on the back and I tried to keep my eyes on the puck. I lost the puck for a second, but turning on myself, I found it. Fortunately for me, I guessed correctly. “
At the end of the match, the team management announced that it had exchanged the goalie Al Montoya to the Edmonton Oilers in return for a conditional pick fourth round in 2018.
The guardian of 32 years, hired as a free agent in 2016, has started to skate with the Canadian at the beginning of the week after an absence of almost two months due to a concussion.
In four games this season, he posted a record of 2-1-0, with an average of 3.77 and an outage rate of ,863.
The Canadian leave training Friday and will be inactive Saturday. It will resume the collar on Sunday night, when it will host Vancouver Canucks.
A bit like Tuesday against the San Jose Sharks, the Canadian has started the meeting. In fact, it has benefited from a number of beautiful scoring chances during the first half of the initial commitment.
The catch is that Valevskiy seemed to see every puck as if it was the size of a beach ball. He started the task as soon as the 23rd second of the game by stealing a sure goal for Pacioretty, who had received a beautiful pass from Phillip Danault and had been able to slip behind the defenders Anton Stralman and Mikhail Sergachev.
At the other end, Price has not been tested as seriously as his rival. Kucherov took advantage of a golden opportunity to two-against-one, but his shot, to a cage completely open, missed the goal.
Pacioretty and Kucherov were able to resume in the first moments of the middle period. The captain of the Canadian broke the deadlock as early as the 20th second, but it took only 44 seconds for Kucherov, the best pointer of the NHL, is equal to the mark with a powerful strike of the wrists, that Price has never seen.
The rest of the game was the case of the two keepers, who delivered a splendid duel to force the holding of the extension.
Echoes of locker room
Claude Julien, about the overall performance of his players following his call to the leaders.
“I found that the whole team has responded well tonight. There has been an effort that gives us chances to win games. “
Max Pacioretty, the subject of the message sent by head coach Claude Julien on the leaders of the club :
“Our coach has turned to many of the best players of the team, we launched the challenge to move us out of our current situation and said that it was up to us to do so. And I think that we have risen to the height of the situation this evening. “