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Canadiens Postgame

Canadiens Edge Out Flames 2-1 In A Shootout, Lose Cole Caufield

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Montreal Canadiens

In a game where nobody seemed intent on scoring, the Montreal Canadiens were able to edge out the Calgary Flames in one of their most bizarre games of the season.

It was a sloppy game from start to finish, which saw high levels of physicality and impact almost by chance, rather than intent.

The two teams had previously played each other less than two weeks ago, but this game seemed to have much more bite than their previous encounter.

Both Jacob Markstrom and Jake Allen held their teams in the game with inspiring performances, with Allen keeping the Canadiens in the game in the third period to force overtime.

Markstrom, who’s been under fire for his play as of late, kept the Flames in the game, especially in overtime, as the Flames had to kill off a double-minor for high-sticking.

The tilt remained tight throughout the whole game, resembling a trench war rather than the quick-fire, offensive tempo we’ve seen from the Canadiens so far this season.

Despite the completely broken pace of the game, due in large to unfortunate injuries and a flurry of penalties, the Canadiens were able to stay in the game and power through a lot of adversity, especially after the loss of Cole Caufield.

Opportunity Knocks

Juraj Slafkovsky has been trending in the right direction and was knocking on the door the last few games.

His puck protection and pace with the puck has visibly improved, allowing him to play his style in the NHL. Being so slippery on coverage allows him to make a lot of space for himself, which allowed him to get off some dangerous shots throughout the game.

Slafkovsky finally broke through on the scoresheet in the third period, when he was able to retrieve a puck along the wall, circle back toward the net and use his reach to slide a perfect pass to Josh Anderson for the tap-in.

Even after the assist, which was his 10th point of the season in his 28th game, Slafkovsky was dangerous around the net and getting shots off with much quicker timing.

If he continues to play this way, he won’t be seeing any time at this year’s World Junior Championships.

Chippy Game

Montreal Canadiens forward Michael Pezzetta got the crowd buzzing at the Bell Centre Monday night thanks to an entertaining fight that did not finish well for Flames forward Connor Mackey.

The fight took place early in the first period, and though Mackey may have gotten the best of Pezzetta in the first few moments, Pezzetta clearly won the fight with a heavy overhand right punch that dropped Mackey to a knee.

This is Pezzetta’s sixth fight of his NHL career. Even though he’s a middleweight, his fight card includes opponents such as the heavyweight champion of the NHL, Ryan Reaves, and the player Arber Xhekaj bullied earlier this season.

Xhekaj was spotted congratulating Pezzetta following the fight, a clear sign of appreciation from someone who knows what it takes to engage in a bare-knuckle fight while more than 20,000 fans cheer.

Pezzetta is not a regular in the Canadiens lineup, and now that Xhekaj has established his role as the team’s enforcer, he will have to work even harder to earn ice time, but he’s no stranger to hard work.

He is one of the hardest-working players in the Canadiens organization and has earned his way into the NHL the hard way, by spending several frustrating seasons in the AHL.

Hopefully this gives the “Pezz Dispenser” some much-needed momentum.

 

 

Scary Sights

On a seemingly simple backcheck in the defensive zone, Montreal Canadiens’ sniper Cole Caufield was fed a suicide pass in front of the net in a lazy play from Mike Hoffman.

That pass reception put Caufield right in the line of sight for a streaking Trevor Lewis, who was coming in at full speak on the forecheck.

Unfortunately for Caufield, the moment he touched the puck, he was fair game, and there was nothing Caufield could do.

Trevor Lewis unloaded with a vicious open-ice hit that saw Caufield’s head bounce off the ice. He was slow to get up, but eventually made his way to the dressing room on his own power.

The ensuing collision was the most vulnerable we’ve ever seen Caufield be on the ice since joining the Canadiens, due in large part to Hoffman’s laziness in the defensive zone.

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