Last night was a good, old fashioned barn burner. A game that gets the heart rate going.
Lost in the craziness of 13 goals, 12 at even strength, was Sidney Crosby's first regular season goal on Bell Centre since January 3rd, 2006. 2615 days had gone by since Crosby scored 2 goals against Jose Theodore, a 6-4 win for Pittsburgh. he 3 players drawing assists on his goals, Tomas Surovy, Ziggy Palffy, and Matt Murley, are no longer in the NHL,
Crosby dominated whenever he was on the ice last night, managing his drought breaking goal and 2 assists. I was going to say that the Canadiens had no answer to Crosby, but that's actually not true, they just didn't use him. Only one defenseman on the team had positive possession against Crosby, can you guess who it was?
P.K. Subban of course, who's possession on the game was an insane 35-13 Corsi events at even strength. Subban carried Kaberle to an excellent game as well, but it's about time that Therrien and company realize that Subban is better used against guys like Crosby than against guys like Tyler Kennedy.
Andrei Markov was also very good last night, but he would be even better if he were taking the secondary competition instead. I know we sound like a broken record on this site about this, but in all honesty, it's the only thing that this team is doing wrong on a consistent basis.
We could go into detail and scrutinize every goal against, and blame Carey Price, but let's all be honest, that kind of performance is a severe outlier for one of the best goaltenders in the game.
With the power out at my place until late at night, I'm at this a lot later than I would like, so I'm going to keep the rest kind of short.
Brandon Prust has been excellent with Tomas Plekanec. In fact, he's been so good there I'm not entirely sure the Habs miss Rene Bourque yet. He can't score like Bourque can, but he's setting up plays and causing havoc constantly, which has allowed Plekanec and Briant Gionta to run roughshod over teams.
Speaking of Gionta, 3 goals in 2 games after 3 in 19 could be the start of something for him.
Brendan Gallagher is a machine. The young man has no fear, and it's paying off on the scoreboard. If all he had done the entire game was set up Subban's game tying marker with 0.7 seconds left in the second period, I think he'd still be a fan favourite for years. Can't wait to see him get in Chara's kitchen tonight.
Max Pacioretty is now over a point per game. Even more impressive? His 30.5 relative Corsi rating is 2nd in the league among players to play over 15 games. Once in awhile when I watch Pacioretty I remember the kid who always skated with his head down in 2009, and thinking he wasn't going to amount to much, then I remember I wasn't very good at watching hockey just a few years ago.
Alexei Emelin has a goal and two assists in his last three games. Emelin! I don't think he has Diaz level offensive ability, but I would much rather see him on the powerplay than Francis Bouillon.
I'd say check out PensBurgh for the view from the opposing side, but they didn't even cover the game last night. I guess they don't think playing one of the top teams in their conference is a big deal? I don't know.