A Shea Weber blast in the first period, two rockets from Andrei Markov in the second, and the Canadiens, with their 3-1 win, down the Ottawa Senators for the third time in a week.
Montreal’s pathetic showings against Detroit and Carolina earlier this week is now ancient history. The Canadiens win a big one, they once again widen the gap to three points in the Atlantic Division fight for first, and they looked decent doing it.
They’re back in our good books, thanks to Markov with his pair of goals and a helper, Carey Price coming up big when called upon, and a clock-punching, hardworking, hard-skating effort by everyone.
They make me proud when they play well and win when it really counts. This is a team we can’t always predict. Sometimes they play like fat reefers were handed around at the morning meeting.
But when they’re angry, focused, and determined, they play as a team. Like a contender. Like tonight.
And through it all, through both good and bad, even when I’m mad at them for sometimes playing like they’re still trying to remember the grocery list, I love them.
I love them like me and my buddy loved hula dancers.
Ottawa outshot the Canadiens 32-24 and were 2/4 on the power play.
A fine example of looking good: In the first period, Ottawa’s feisty Alex Burrows high-sticked Alex Galchenyuk in the face, and a few seconds later, Andrew Shaw tuned Burrows up. I thought it was a fine moment. Teammate helping teammate. Far too often in the past this wouldn’t happen, and it was always embarrassing. Seeing a tougher team is pure joy.
Next up – Tuesday, when the Dallas Stars pay a visit to beautiful downtown Montreal.