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Anderson, Gurianov, Lehkonen Score In Canadiens Loss Vs. Avs



Canadiens forward Denis Gurianov 2

The Montreal Canadiens hosted the Colorado Avalanche in a rare Monday-night matchup which quickly went haywire for the home team.

Montreal rallied in the third period, but it was all for naught.  The end result, an 8-4 loss for the Canadiens, was yet another excellent game for those keeping the 2023 Draft Lottery in mind.

As it stands, the Canadiens are among the five worst teams in the NHL.

Domination Station

The Avalanche did not waste any time putting the hurt on the Canadiens.

They scored four goals on eight shots, terrorizing the defensive group in the process. It wasn’t just a matter of getting lucky, either. The Avalanche put together dominant puck-possession shifts that resulted in a significant energy drain for the Canadiens’ defenders, and eventually, relatively easy goals for the road team.

Fan-favourite Artturi Lehkonen also got in on the action, scoring his 20th goal of the season to put the Avalanche up 4-0.

MUST READ: A look back at the Lehkonen-Barron trade

During the first intermission, it was revealed Lehkonen had also tipped the puck in the first goal of the night, which means he didn’t just hit 20 goals against the Canadiens, but he also scored his 100th goal against his former club.

The Canadiens honoured their former player with a first-period montage that was aired during a TV timeout.

Ideally, Jake Allen would have put a stop to the bleeding before things got out of hand, but realistically, only a superhuman effort by Allen would have kept the score tied.

To the Canadiens’ credit, it was the first time they allowed four goals against in the first period this season, which is the type of sad statistic we tend to cling to at this point in the year.

Allen was mercifully pulled for Samuel Montembeault after the Avalanche took a 6-1 lead early in the second period.


Anderson’s Ascension

There was silver lining to the first period, and it came in the form of Josh Anderson’s first 20-goal season in a Canadiens uniform and the second 20-goal effort of his career.

Credit where credit is due, Anderson seems like a player who transformed in the second half of the season. He’s much more flexible when it comes to his style of play, which was traditionally a north-south offence, only.

He’s playing better off the cycle, and he’s utilizing his teammates’ strengths rather than just focusing on his own.

A stick tap goes out to Nick Suzuki for his crispy clean faceoff win and presence of mind to drive the net, which is when Anderson took advantage of the chaos.

Another stick tap goes out to Alex Belzile, who did everything but score before Chris Wideman’s first goal of the season, as well as Mike Matheson, who scored his sixth goal of the season midway through the third period.

More Injuries

This may shock you, but the Canadiens added yet another player to their endlessly growing infirmary list.

Forward Rem Pitlick was forced to leave the game following an unfortunate incident in the first period.

Denis Delivers

Denis Gurianov scored his third goal in a Canadiens uniform, which means he scored more goals in seven games with the Habs than he did in 43 outings with his former team, the Dallas Stars.

As Gurianov continues to build a case for a contract offer, we should probably focus on the most important aspect of the play, which was Nick Suzuki’s quick thinking.

MUST READ: Early review of Denis Gurianov’s play with the Canadiens

He bailed out Jonathan Drouin, who had good intentions but poor execution along the boards, by denying an Avalanche shorthanded breakaway as he collected his 50th point of the season.

Suzuki is almost always the smartest player on the ice on any given night, and Monday night’s matchup was not an exception.


The Canadiens are back in action on Tuesday night, facing the Penguins in Pittsburgh. The puck drop is scheduled for 7 PM ET.

All statistics are 5v5 unless otherwise noted, via NaturalStatTrick.

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That was definitely an ugly one. At one point the Avalanche had more goals (6) than we had shots(4)!!! Yikes.

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