Montreal Canadiens 4 – Anaheim Ducks 3 (SO)
The Ducks started the first period slow and couldn’t seem to get going in the first 10 minutes of the game. The Canadiens came out fast with a quick wrist shot by Alex Galchenyuk in the first 31 seconds of the period. The Canadiens registered the first six shots on goal in the game. Jonas Hiller kept the game tied early. At 15:03, Tim Jackman landed a solid check on Josh Gorges against the glass, to which George Parros took exception. Parros skated up to Jackman and they exchanged a few words before finally dropping the gloves. The fight was pretty even with both throwing some big right handed punches. Jackman took down Parros to end the fight. The crowd was really into it because Parros played for the Ducks and was part of the 2007 Stanley Cup Champion team. Jackman and Parros both received five minutes for fighting. Parros also received two minutes for unsportsmanlike conduct/instigating; served by Alex Galchenyuk. The Ducks didn’t do much on the power play, they had a difficult time setting up in the offensive zone and failed to register a shot during the power play. At 11:37, Brian Gionta fired a wrist shot past Hiller; assisted by Tomas Plekanec. Then at 7:24, Max Pacioretty ripped another wrister past Hiller; assisted by David Desharnais and Brendan Gallagher. The Ducks appeared to play better at the end of the period and out shot the Canadiens 13-10, but still trailed by two goals.
The Ducks came out with more energy in the second period. They began to cycle the puck better. At 16:36, Alexei Emelin was penalized for holding Pat Maroon. The Ducks, again, failed to score on the power play. Corey Perry had a good backhand attempt close by the net, but Dustin Tokarski stopped him. At 12:52, Luca Sbisa took a long slap shot that Tim Jackman would tip in behind Tokarski; assists to Sbisa and Nick Bonino. At 12:24, Emelin took another penalty for tripping Bonino. At 10:53, Francois Beauchemin would score a unique power play goal off the stanchion. Beauchemin fired the puck in the zone off the glass on the left side. Tokarski skated behind the net to intercept the puck, when the puck changed direction from hitting the stanchion and went straight into the wide open net. I have seen this happen only a few times and its a bounce the Ducks will gladly accept. The assists went to Hampus Lindholm and Hiller. With 1:49 left in the period, Daniel Winnik tapped in the go ahead goal with assists from Matt Beleskey and Ben Lovejoy. The Ducks lead only lasted a short time as Brendan Gallagher scored with 36 seconds left in the period; assists by P.K. Subban and Travis Moen. The Ducks had all the momentum in the second period until that final goal by the Canadiens and they outshot the Canadiens 19 to 9.
The Canadiens came out strong and appeared to score the go ahead goal at 18:54. Gallagher tipped the puck past Hiller with a high stick and it was waved off immediately by the referee. The video replay upheld the call on the ice as no goal. At 15:00 in the third period, Kyle Palmieri had an opportunity for an odd man rush, but broke the blade on one of his skates. At 13:30, Bryan Allen was called for an interference against Rene Bourque. Montreal crashed the net and took several shots on net, but Hiller stood tall keeping the puck out. The Ducks killed the penalty off and then the Ducks would go on the power play at 7:40. Bourque was given two minutes for hooking Mark Fistric. The Ducks were unable to score and the game remained tied. With the Canadiens putting on the pressure, Saku Koivu took a penalty for hooking against Desharnais with 5:05 left in the third. Hiller made some great saves and the Ducks killed the penalty. The teams traded post shots, including a 2 on 1 rush where Ryan Getzlaf‘s shot rang off the post. The Canadiens made one final push and Gionta made a good wrist shot that Hiller saved with only three seconds left in the period. The teams went back and forth in the third, but there was no scoring and the game headed to overtime. The Canadiens had nine shots and the Ducks had seven.
The overtime was uneventful. There were no penalties in the overtime. Both teams managed to get three shots on goal. The Canadiens had a good chance when the Ducks turned over the puck in the defensive zone. Galchenyuk took a wrist shot, but Hiller made the save.
The Ducks would shoot first in the shootout and here is a recap:
Bonino – GOAL, triple deke, open net
Galchenyuk – SAVE, pad save by Hiller
Silfverberg – MISS, shot over top of net
Desharnais – GOAL, backhand roofed over Hiller
Perry – GOAL, five hole
Briere – GOAL, Faked a wrist shot, then shot it high stick side
Getzlaf – MISS, high over the net, glove side
Gallagher – SAVE, shot five hole, Hiller stacked pads
Palmieri – Shot off the post blocker side and then off opposite post and out, it appeared to go in, but a long review showed it never fully crossed the line
Plecanec – MISS, backhand shot to the side of the net
Koivu – SAVE, tried to slide under the pads
Markov – GOAL, five hole shot
Canadiens 3 for 6 – Ducks 2 for 6 in Shootout, Canadiens win
NHL Three Stars of the Game (official):
1. Nick Bonino
2. Brendan Gallagher
3. Cam Fowler
I put blame on the Ducks team as a whole for this loss. The team started out slow in the first period allowing the Canadiens to get the early jump 2-0. The Ducks have been known as the “Come back kids” this season for being able to rally when trailing after the first or second periods. However, tonight they just couldn’t quite pull off another comeback. Heading in the playoff stretch the Ducks can’t rely on trying to rally too often.
The Ducks’ next game is Friday March 7th at Honda Center against the Pittsburgh Penguins. The puck drops at 7:00PM.