The Canadiens certainly never dominated, and they almost blew it, but the end result was a win, a 4-3 shootout win, and it’s two points in the bank that pushes the boys to within six points of 8th place Toronto.
Six points with 23 games left! No sweat. I don’t know why we were so concerned. Of course if Toronto keeps winning, we’re screwed anyway. Hell, if anyone keeps winning we’re screwed. Wasn’t it Einstein who came up with the theory that winning while others win equals losing?
It was a seesaw affair all the way through. Buffalo jumped out to a 1-0 lead, Tomas Kaberle tied it, then Buffalo once again took the lead before Scott Gomez fired one home with just 14 seconds remaining in the first, and once again the game was tied.
Did I just say Scott Gomez? His second goal of the season? This puts him well ahead of his pace and possibly deserves a raise for this.
Chris Campoli gave the team the lead in the third, but once again the Habs pulled a Linda Lovelace and before you can say George Stroumboulopoulos, the game was tied after a weak effort from defenders Kaberle and Campoli, which sounds like an Italian comedy team.
The overtime came and went, although the Sabres came close way too many times, and finally the Canadiens found success in the shootout as both Max Pacioretty and David Desharnais solved Ryan Miller, and a good time was had by all if you were a Habs fan.
Shots on goal – Buffalo 30, Habs 19.
Gomez was selected third star behind Max and Carey Price. Third star. The thought of Gomez in these lofty heights is making me dizzy.
Why didn’t Randy Cunneyworth clue in before that the secret to shootout success is to go with the Cole line, or in the case tonight, two-thirds of the Cole line. They’ve been the most consistent shooters all year, so you’d have to think they’d probably do well in shootouts, which is what happened tonight with both Max and Desharnais getting it done.
Ryan White played with vim and vigour, and he has that nice little edge that keeps everybody on their toes. Travis Moen’s been the go-to guy all year in the feistiness department, but White does it with more energy, and probably, once he gets going, with a little more consistency. Moen’s name has come up often recently in trade speculation, and it seems it could be a possibility. Is it a luxury to have two of these types of battlers, or are Moen’s days now numbered with White’s return?
Next game – Sunday, when the boys host the Devils.