Thank You Carey!

An outstanding display from Carey Price. Brilliant from start to finish, stopping 48 of 51 shots, including a plethora of tough ones, and the Canadiens take the opener in Boston.

It was PK Subban, with his second power play goal of the game, hitting the back of the net in the second overtime to give his team a huge 4-3 win.

They were outplayed but they weren’t outscored, which is the basic rule of the game. The team that scores most, wins.

And they weren’t always outplayed, it just seemed like it. Tuukka Rask had to come up big often.

The Canadiens opened the scoring in the first with a blueline wrist shot from PK with the man-advantage, and the team, after weathering an early onslaught, settled down and picked it up a notch.

In the second, Rene Bourque made it 2-0 on a pass from Lars Eller, and Price was magnificent throughout, especially during a Bruins power play that was ridiculous in the fury seen around the net.

The Bruins took charge. They slammed bodies, stormed the net, kept coming, rang pucks off posts, came close far too often, kept the puck in the Canadiens end for several heart-stopping days and weeks  it seemed.

Often I couldn’t look.

Our man stood tall though, before, during, and after.  Price stole it for his team, but brilliant playoff goaltending is a time-honoured tradition, and legends are slowly carved from performances like this.

Not only did he help his team win, but he might have started the process of being in the Bruins’ heads. Maybe they’ll toss and turn all night, thinking of what might have been. Maybe they’ll think about storming the net on Saturday. Maybe they’ll start to question their ability to beat this guy.

And if they think they should be more forceful,  they’ll remind themselves that the Canadiens bulged the twine twice on the power play and they’ll have to think twice about being more physical.

Maybe they’ll blow their minds from thinking too much. Although Brad Marchand doesn’t have to worry about that.

For a hundred years, goalies have been saving the day on special nights, and on Thursday in Boston, it was Price’s turn. But he’ll need to do it again and again, although hopefully the players in front of him will decide to keep the puck in the other end more often than game one.

Another rule of the game. Keep the puck in the other end as much as possible.

The Bruins pushed hard in the third and would tie it at two, and the game became as intense as most seventh games. To win the first would be huge. Blowing a two-goal lead was already disappointing. Losing the opener would be a painful blow.

After regaining the lead on a shot by Francis Bouillon, the Bruins would tie it again with just 1:58 left in the third. A horrible turn of events. Sometimes I wonder if my old ticker can handle this sort of thing.

No scoring in the first overtime, Price continued to be sensational, and after Matt Bartkowski took a holding penalty at 4:10 of the second overtime, PK blasted it home just seven seconds later.

I’m sure Jack Edwards had lots to say about that.

And isn’t it lovely that the one player that Bruins players, fans and media consider the most despicable was the one who settled things. Has to be a hockey god thing. Thank you PK, for scoring the winner and wounding Bruins fans.

A huge game-one win. The Canadiens’ fifth straight playoff victory. Carey Price held the fort.

Random Notes:

The DD, Vanek, Max line was ineffective all evening but that should change. The Punch Line had off-nights too.

The Eller, Bourque, Gionta trio was Montreal’s best, and aside from Price and Subban’s heroics, my choice for best skater on the night for the good guys was Lars Eller. He skated well, made smart decisions, and had several fine chances. The same could be said for Rene Bourque. They picked up where they left off from the Tampa series. Many wondered if they could. And they did.

Brendan Gallagher came to play too. But many were quiet and we’re expecting a different story in game two.

Goal scoring recap – PK, Bourque, Bouillon, and PK.

Final shots on goal after four periods and four minutes – Boston 51, Montreal 33.

Next game – Saturday at 12:30 pm eastern. A lot of people hate afternoon games. I don’t mind them as much as many, but I’m not overly crazy about them either.

I suppose I’m used to early starts after living on the West Coast for so many years. For West Coasters, Saturday’s game is at 9:30 am, which truly sucks.


13 thoughts on “Thank You Carey!”

  1. Dude that was one hell of a game, and you said it (including having to look away at one moment!) well… More later late night early morning to come…! but they did it so let the nay-sayers stuff it!

  2. Rene Bourque has redeemed himself. We need to sign him.

    I enjoyed the Bah-stin fans showing their colors at the end of the game, although I find it ironic trash throwing trash!

    One game at time, but that was huge!

  3. Lots can be said but the One thing—–leading to many things—-I was amazed at, was the lack of crap after the whistles—and before the whistles. There was lots of thumping all game but it seemed pretty legit. And the way P.K. reacted after each of his goals —no showboating, plus skating away after whistles—- sure got the Boston players and fans fuming ‘ cause they had no reason to hate his behavour !! His after game interview was a masterpiece! Going to work,kinda tired, BUT the hurts don’t hurt long if we win!!!!!

  4. Dennis, the Habs are in the Bruins’ heads for sure now:

    Dan Shaughnessy: “This was a kick to the stomach. The most-hated guy on the most-hated team came into our town and won it with a blazing slap shot in the early seconds of a power play. ”

    “I was [expletive] tonight,’’ said Rask. “When you suck, you suck . . . I made some saves, I couldn’t make the game-saver . . . I need to be better. From a goaltending standpoint, Price outplayed me tonight.’’

    Isn’t this great?

  5. It’s funny, Dennis–the two keys that you and I both mentioned, the power play and the play of Carey Price, were the two determining factors in last night’s game (and in a good way). I read plenty of squawking by Bruins fans on my Twitter feed about the penalty calls, but those were both legitimate penalties that even Bruins cheerleaders Pierre McGuire and Mike Millbury acknowledged “had to be called”.

    That said, the Habs will have to play much better going forward, especially the big line. Vanek in particular was so ineffective that he was benched and then dropped to the fourth line for a few shifts. I have to wonder if he wasn’t feeling well, because this is a guy who has made it a career of killing the Bruins.

    Despite the Bruins’ edge in shots in the first two periods, I thought that Montreal was in complete control of the game. The third period and first overtime were ALL Boston, though, to an almost ridiculous degree. Still, any playoff win, especially on the road, is a big one!

  6. Two huge keys, Ian. If a team in the playoffs can get outstanding goaltending and excellent special teams, a serious dent can be made. Montreal was winning for the past several months without a good power play, it was a glaring weakness that needed to change. I thought they should have had a few more power plays too. Brad Marchand did about 3 or 4 things that I think should’ve been called but weren’t. I love that Marchand is brain-dead, it’ll help the Habs greatly.I have confidence the big line will get going. Some adjustments need to be made. They play their best when the pressure is on in the other end and Boston didn’t allow a whole lot of that last night. What’s great is that we don’t don’t always have to rely on them. Others, like the Eller line, are playing really well. Eller and Bourque are completely different than the regular season. It’s awesome to see.

  7. It’s so awesome, Danno. Get into their heads, which started before the game last night. Love those kicks to the stomach. Hoping for many more. Price and PK. Eller and Bourque. My heart soars like Edith Bunker’s voice.

  8. Peter, I loved PK’s demeanor after the goasl and during the interview. It’s something that’s coming with maturity. And at the end, didn’t he compliment Oakes on his suit? As the series goes on the crap might start before and after whistles, especially if the Canadiens get more and more into the Bruins’ heads. But it could prove to be good, especially if our power play is clicking. I’m hoping Julien lets Marchand continue the way he’s going. It’ll cost them.

  9. So huge Mike M. Winning the first game on enemy ice is awesome beyond words. Sure was tense and nerve-wracking. I found myself doing a lot of pacing in the living room. And you’re sure right, Bourque has redeemed himself. He’s playing the way we thought he would when he came in the Cammy trade. He’s got all the tools, it just seemed his mind wasn’t there. But it is now, and Eller’s too. My pride in this team is immense, and winning tomorrow would be just incredible.

  10. So great, eh William? Love when things don’t go well for Bruins fans. And I’ll bet deep down they admire PK a lot. And Price looked like Broda, Durnan, Plante, Sawchuk, Crozier, Dryden, Halak, and the rest that have stood tall in the playoffs. Tomorrow will be huge. The Bruins will be testy.

  11. I believe the milk carton thing cured the power play.

    I wonder if I should make one with Vanek’s picture on one? 😆

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