The Canadiens rebound from a 7-1 trouncing on Thursday in Minnesota to edge the visiting New York Rangers 5-4 at the Bell on Saturday night, and church bells ring throughout the land.
So if you hear church bells on Saturday night or Sunday morning, it’s because the Habs won. What else could it be?
Not only did they win but they did it by scoring three unanswered goals in the third period to do it. It’s almost religious.
The first period saw Andrew Shaw, returning from concussion, interfere in the crease which caused Phillip Danault’s goal to be called back, the team was scored upon with Shaw in the box, and to cap off the night for the returning not-so-bright forward, he blindsided Jesper Fast and received a five minute major and game misconduct.
Too much energy and adrenaline for Shaw, and not enough brain cells turned on. But whatever. The team won. And regardless of the lack of brain cells, at least Shaw plays with an edge.
I’ve been whining that the Canadiens have been too full of peace and love for a decade. Time to be mean assholes. But probably a bit smarter than Shaw on this night.
Alex Galchenyuk, back from sick bay after more than a month, tied the game with a deflection, but quickly the visitors went ahead after Alexei Emelin took the man but forgot the puck, and Rick Nash banged it home.
But….I don’t understand.
Kevin Hayes barged in, wrapped his skate behind Carey Price’s pad, and dragged the poor bastard out of the crease, thereby giving Nash the open net. The play was reviewed and the goal stood.
How come? Please tell me. Maybe Kerry Fraser can explain. I’ll watch for it.
Things were heating up, and the Bell Centre patrons sat up. Brian Flynn would shove it home to tie the game at 2-2, but tragically, our man Chucky would lose the puck along the boards, reliable old Shea Weber was beaten cleanly, it was 3-2 Rangers, and life wasn’t worth living.
Until it was.
The third frame saw Alexei Emelin fire a wrist shot home from the blueline to put things at 3-3, then Max would outrace two d-men to put the boys ahead 4-3, and Paul Byron would give them a beauty of two goal, 5-3 lead.
The Rangers would make it 5-4 with 5:07 left, but that was the best the Broadway Blueshirts could do.
Habs win 5-4. And please don’t fret about Carey Price’s mediocre play lately, or cracks in defence, or this or that. This is the regular season, where we only have to be concerned about them making the playoffs, which they will.
The regular season is only a rehearsal, a fine-tuning, a time to get the gang ready for opening night – the playoffs. I’m sure Marlon Brando was an asshole sometimes before the cameras rolled, and then rallied to give the performance of his life.
That’s the Habs. Ups, downs, fine tuning, readying for the curtain to rise.
The Rangers outshot Montreal 33-32. Price came up big a bunch of times.
Next up – two tough games on the horizon. Detroit on Monday, and at home to greet Pittsburgh on Wednesday.