NHL Game Summary - Montreal at Ottawa|
(Tuesday, December 27th)
Final Score: Montreal 6, Ottawa 2
Ottawa, ON (Sports Network) - Lars Eller's short-handed goal in the first
period started an offensive display the Montreal Canadiens used to down the
Ottawa Senators, 6-2, and snap a five-game slide.
The Canadiens scored five consecutive goals, starting with Eller's at 5:08 of
the first period and ending with P.K. Subban's 5:53 into the second.
The outburst allowed Montreal to earn its first victory since December 13
against the Islanders. The Habs had scored only nine goals during their recent
slide, and were shut out in Winnipeg on Thursday.
Carey Price made 33 saves in the win, the Habs' first under interim head coach
Randy Cunneyworth. He moved into that role when Jacques Martin was fired
"He's been doing a good job for us," Price said of Cunneyworth. "We haven't
been playing up to par, so it was really good to be able to get that one for
By contrast, Craig Anderson allowed four goals on seven shots in the start for
Ottawa. He was replaced two minutes into the second period by Alex Auld, who
made 19 saves the rest of the way.
But by then it was too late for the Senators, who dropped their second
Ottawa's Zack Smith lit the lamp just 1:42 into the game, but the Habs soon
evened the contest. With Tomas Plekanec in the penalty box for tripping, Eller
fought for control of a loose puck in the neutral zone, used his size to hold
off Senators defenseman Erik Karlsson as he approached the left circle, then
ripped a shot to the far side of the net. The puck flew past Anderson's glove,
bounced off the post and went in.
Plekanec tipped in a goal at 12:39, and nearly three minutes later Mike
Cammalleri scored on a rebound of Louis Leblanc's point blast.
Montreal grabbed a 4-1 lead 2:03 into the second period when Leblanc scored
during a 3-on-2 counter-rush. Subban's wrister from the slot ended the surge.
Jason Spezza scored Ottawa's second goal less than a minute after Subban
tallied, but the Senators never caught up. Erik Cole netted a power-play
marker late in the final period to finish the rout.
"They buried their chances, we didn't bury ours," Spezza said. "We knew they
were going to be a hungry team coming in here struggling. It was disappointing
to have a first period we had."
Raphael Diaz had three assists for Montreal...Ottawa hosts Calgary on
Friday...Montreal improved to 1-3-0 on its six-game road trip, which ends with
two games in Florida. The Habs play the Lightning on Thursday and face the
Panthers on Saturday.
12/28 00:19:49 ET