Two of the top teams in the Eastern Conference met tonight, with the Montreal
Canadiens emerging victors over the visiting Boston Bruins, 2-1. In a game
that lacked a lot of flow, the Canadiens capitalized on a fluky powerplay goal
from Michael Ryder to take a 3 point lead over Boston in the standings.
Alex Galchenyuk opened the scoring in the first period when his hard work,
paired with a fortuitous bounce, gave the Canadiens an early lead. Sadly,
any momentum gained by this goal was lost when Alexei Emelin left the game with
an apparent knee injury after hitting Milan Lucic. Lucic’s indisciplined
play gave Montreal a 2-0 lead when Ryder tipped a P.K. Subban shot with the
man-advantage. Daniel Paille was credited with bringing the score within
one, when a Johnny Boychuk point shot bounced off of his thigh past the hapless
Carey Price. Despite some good chances from either side, the score
remained unchanged for the rest of the game.
HW 3 Stars of the Night
1st Star: Carey Price – If it weren’t for an unfortunate bounce, Carey
would have had a well-earned shutout. As it was, Price made 26 saves, and
kept his team in the game for extended periods of time (e.g., the 2nd period).
In particular, Price’s rebound control permitted him to slow the game down, and
stop Boston’s attack from developing into something more dangerous.
2nd Star: Alex Galchenyuk – It seems like the young rookie is quickly
beginning to understand what the Boston – Montreal rivalry entails… and has
adjusted his play accordingly. Although he was guilty of overhandling the
puck at times, Chuckie was effective on almost every shift, and was notably more
physical than usual. His play and hard work were appreciated with the top
lines being shut down by Boston’s defence.
3rd Star: P.K. Subban – P.K. reinforced his hold on the scoring lead for
defensemen with two more points, but that’s only part of the story. With
the injury to Alexei Emelin, Subban was forced to play additional, more
difficult minutes against a formidable Boston team. His 25:03 TOI was
second to just Josh Gorges (26:18) and his play was crucial to Montreal’s
Honourable Mention: Michael Ryder – Ryder continued to make GM Marc
Bergevin look like a genius as he recorded his 6th goal over the last 6 games.
Ryder was tenacious on the forecheck, contributed to a lot of pressure in the
opposition’s end, and of course, tallied the game-winning goal.