For the second straight night, the Canadiens found themselves in a shootout, and for the second straight night, lost the damn shootout.
Into New Jersey they went, and out they came with a 3-2 loss, which also happens to be the team’s 5th defeat in six games.
And it wasn’t because Toker was between the pipes. It was mostly due to once again being tremendously shitty with the man advantage.
The stage was set though, with just over five minutes remaining in the second period, when, and I have a hard time even writing his name – Scott Gomez – the man who was as useless as can be when he wore the CH, a player I have a harder time looking at than PJ Stock, elbowed Alexei Emelin in the face and received a five-minute major and a game.
The Canadiens couldn’t score during this gift-wrapped situation and it hurt to see it. How I wanted a nail hammered into Gomez’s skull. How I wanted him to see a Habs goal on TV as he sat in the room and smiled and spit.
The boys managed just one shot instead, and Gomez got off scot-free.
Gomez was described as a “wily veteran” by announcers for nailing Emelin after the Russian had crashed Gomez into the boards a minute before. But a wily veteran would have been smarter than that by trying to inflict damage without taking a penalty. Something Howe or Messier knew how to do in spades.
Gomez’s elbow was for all to see. So make that “not wily” and add “incredibly stupid”.
There’s just something about this guy. He and Stock. I wish they’d start up a figure skating school in Reykavik and live happily ever after.
With just over 4 minutes left in the third, with the game still knotted at two apiece, the Habs enjoyed a brief 5 on 3 power play and again, couldn’t score, and at that point, visions of losing in the shootout danced in my head.
They went 1 for 6 on the pp on this night, and along with the lacklustre shootout attempts by Galchenyuk and DD and any other things you can find fault with throughout, it’s as disheartening as can be to see a lifeless and uninspired power play that has crawled along for most of 79 games now and made as much noise and damage as the popguns I played with as a kid when I was Davy Crockett in the field next door.
The boys did take a 2-1 lead in the first though, on goals by Plekanec and Petry, but the Devils tied it in the second period, and that was that until the shootout.
Montreal outshot New Jersey 33-18.
I try not to go on about bad calls if I can help it, but it was a horrible interference call on Alex Galchenyuk in the second period, who, as it showed on the replay, did absolutely nothing to warrant the two minutes. Big league officiating at its finest.
Next up – Sunday in Sunrise, with a 5:00 pm et start.
I’ve always been a big supporter of the Easter bunny.