NHL Game Summary - Colorado at Montreal
(Saturday, October 21st)
Final Score: Montreal 8, Colorado 5
Montreal, QC (Sports Network) - Sheldon Souray had a four-point night and Montreal netted the game's last three goals to win a high-scoring affair with Colorado, 8-5.
Souray had two goals and a pair of assists, Sergei Samsonov and Mike Johnson each had a goal and an assist and Saku Koivu and Andrei Markov each had three helpers for the Canadiens, who have lost two in a row.
Andrew Brunette had his first two goals of the season while Joe Sakic had a goal and an assist for the Avalanche, who wrapped up a three-game road trip at 2-1.
The game featured a pair of goaltenders who were traded for each other last season. Colorado's Jose Theodore, who became expendable in Montreal last season thanks to the solid play of Cristobal Huet, was tagged for all eight goals on 36 shots faced while the Canadiens' David Aebischer allowed five goals on 38 shots faced.
"I was very nervous before the game but after a couple of shots I was back in the picture," Theodore said.
Said Aebischer, "It was a crazy game, full of emotions. It got to me too, but it was good enough for the victory."
Colorado at one point seemed to have command of things after netting the game's first three goals in the first period. However, with the game tied at 5-5 in the third, Montreal exploded for three goals to seal the win.
Christopher Higgins put Montreal ahead 6-5 when he stuffed home a rebound off a Koivu one-timer with 9:05 to play and Alex Kovalev made it a two-goal lead when, to the right of the net, he took a pass from Samsonov that he whipped past Theodore with 5:12 to go.
Johnson capped the three-goal burst with his second of the year with 6:06 left.
The game looked different early on as the Avalanche netted three goals in a 1:15 span to take a commanding first-period lead.
Marek Svatos got things started as he sliced between two defenders before sliding a pass in front that Sakic sent past Aebischer's stick side with 4:34 left.
Just 26 seconds later, Sakic backhanded a pass into the slot and the disc was eventually put in the back of the net by Brunette for a 2-0 lead.
Paul Stastny capped the burst with his first NHL goal with 3:19 to go.
Montreal got on the board with a late power-play goal when Souray beat Theodore with a one-time shot from the right point through traffic with 2:40 remaining.
"A lot of the credit goes to the guys who get the puck and pass it back to me," Souray said.
Souray's second goal of the game pulled the Canadiens to within 3-2 just 4:22 into the second.
Tyler Arnason restored Colorado's two-goal lead 2:04 later when he redirected a shot from in front past Aebischer.
However, Montreal came right back as Kovalev took an outlet pass up the ice before backhanding a pass cross ice to Samsonov, who put the feed past Theodore's glove at 9:23 of the frame.
That was the start of three straight goals by Montreal as Michael Ryder scored during a 5-on-3 advantage 29 seconds into the third and Craig Rivet's breakaway goal at 5:40 of the frame gave the Canadiens a 5-4 lead.
"What really killed us was the 5-on-3 in the third period and I feel I let the team down," Theodore said.
Colorado had an answer just over three minutes later as Brunette's rebound tally tied the game at 5-5.
The last time Montreal scored eight goals in a game was against Pittsburgh on January 10th, 2004. Souray had five points in that contest...Higgins has four goals and one assist in his last five games...Colorado's Ian Laperriere had a three-game assists streak snapped...Sakic has three goals in his last four games. He now needs just three more points to become the 11th player in league history to reach 1,500 points...This was the only meeting of the season between the two teams and the first time Colorado traveled to Montreal since 2004...The Canadiens will play five of their next seven games at home... Colorado begins a three-game homestand on Monday.
10/21 22:23:40 ET