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Canadiens vs Lightning Game Two Top Six Minutes: Going to Tampa down 2 games

The Habs started off great, then bad penalties and the bleak powerplay got the best of them.

Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports

I know you might have a hard time believing this, but the Canadiens did not lose their series to the Tampa Bay Lightning two nights ago. It was in fact only Game 1 of 7, in which the Habs played a terrific game. It was an offside play on the goal in double OT that won the game for Tampa, and they know it, and if I'm them, I'm thinking, "We can't do that three more times." It brings me back to that no-score game that went to OT in the regular season, that Tampa won on a goal that didn't even come off a Bolt's stick. Listening to Stamkos in that post-game, he sounded positively dazed as he talked about Carey Price.

I know we're all used to being terrified in Montreal of the inevitability of the Habs' demise. We've been waiting for it since the preseason. That's the royal "we" obviously since I specifically have not. But I was watching everyone on Friday, and to me, Bishop looks terrified. You just have to drown out the commentators who love to laud every opposing goalie as the second coming of Jesus Price, but the fact is, no goalie is. And god bless Ben Bishop, he is certainly not.

The Habs may "not be able to score," and their powerplay is hurting, but this series is not over. The "six in a row" narrative is probably not in the Canadiens' heads. The team that scored the most goals in the regular season barely squeaked out of the first round. And everybody knows how much I love Carey Price, but he only needed to "be Carey Price" in one game against Ottawa. So coming down to a contest of the goalies, um, guess what.

One more thing: Stamkos will eventually score, maybe even tonight. The Habs will lose at least another game in this series, maybe even tonight. And everyone's faith that is already on tenterhooks will be erased. The thing is, I feel like the team is more motivated the less belief there is.

I'm hoping to erase the visual of a gosh-oh-golly Jon Cooper skipping across the ice after the game, laughing to himself knowing the cameras are trained on him, chewing his gum like it's a contest.

Of course, I'm typing this about an hour before puck drop, and you're reading it after the game is over. One thing is for sure: this is gonna be fun. Be grateful you're not a fan of one of the 22 teams not in the race.

  • Elliotte Friedman is far and away my favourite part of the Sportsnet team, aside from Strombo as the host. But I don't get showing a play where Montreal was offside in the middle of a game, that didn't even end up in a goal, like it's somehow the same as a blown call in a double-OT goal.
  • I mean, I'm not bitter or anything.
  • We just found out that David Desharnais, who had a tough night on Friday, is out with the flu. This is where "in like Flynn" came from.
  • Cue the "what the hell are these lines" tweets on Twitter, which obviously means the Habs will win.
  • Sara Diamond is wearing the exact shade of lipstick I've been on a decades-long quest for. DECADES.
  • Carey eyes didn't move tonight.
First period:
  • "David Desharnais is out with the flu, or ... just hasn't been playing very well."
  • Great first shift, ends in a scrum around Bishop's net. HOCKEY.
  • Keep doing what you're doing, Habs. Rattle Bishop early. I still get excited when we get a powerplay - what's that condition called?
  • No goal but I did not hate that powerplay.
  • "The Habs still can't score a first period goal." Hi, we're three and a half minutes in.
  • The "EGG" line has been reunited, however momentarily. Remember how the actual members of that line hated that name? I dub them "Ellyengher". That's actually worse, I'm sorry.
  • Awesome shot of Coach Adorable chewing his gum furiously behind the bench, this already made my day.
  • Jeff Petry. Dear Marc Bergevin: can we keep him? I'M SERIOUS.
  • FLYNN with the huge chance.
  • Another shot of Bishop who looks like he'd rather be anywhere else. I'm not joking.
  • Here are all the complaints I have about the Habs so far: __________________.
  • I don't love how quiet the Bell Centre is though. What the? Make NOISE.
  • I have been a huge fan all season of Michel Therrien
  • 's jacket-shirt-tie combos, and tonight is no exception.
  • Mitchell flips Bishop in the mask. I think we know that the game plan tonight is to bother Captain Hothead.
  • I kind of don't get that call on Brandon Prust, but Tampa's powerplay sucks so whatever.
  • And they trip Pacioretty too, but there's no call, soooooo
  • Carey Price, everybody. Nuff said.
  • And the regular season's highest-scoring team comes up with absolutely bupkes with a four-minute man-advantage.
  • Not to be deterred, the refs are giving Tampa another chance with another powerplay right away. If I'm them I'm not too excited after that four-minute joke.
  • The Lightning are preeeeeeetty bad in the faceoff circle, holy crap.
  • All the shorthanded chances!!! Torrey Mitchell so close!
  • Oops. Tie game.
  • Smoke 'em if you got 'em.
Second period:
  • CBC just called Youppi "Oopee." Okay.
  • Torrey Mitchell is HANGRY.
  • Killorn penalty, Habs to the powerplay.
  • Bishop is very strange to me how he chooses to play the puck outside the net on a Habs' powerplay.
  • OK, that one did not look great. Thank god we're back to 5-on-5.
  • Also, I really need the Bell Centre to be louder.
  • Can't we please stay on even-strength? Gad.
  • You just know Coach Silky-Smooth rehearses his looks in the mirror.
  • Stamkos scores, and everything is unravelling.
  • Okay so there will be a lot of goals in this game. Time to get it back. NOW.
  • A little four on four? Me likey.
  • Selfish penalty there by Gilbert. I'm writing this period off. Mr. "I love making Montreal fans sad" scores.
  • I just peeked at twitter. Bruins/Sens/Leafs fans all celebrating, Habs fans declaring series over. Twitter is fun, eh? No, not really.
  • MAKE NOISE, BELL CENTRE. Fly me out, Bergevin. I will make more noise than ALL OF THEM. I hate saying mean things, but I'm giving a huge thumbs down to the Bell Centre crowd.
  • I'm expecting one hell of an intermission speech by Carey Price. The kind that creates new orifices, if you know what I mean.
  • The linesmen are simply calling everything off-side today after gifting Game 1 to Tampa. Tough break for Gallagher.
  • Petry to the box, and CBC jumps on the "series over" bandwagon. Third period will be watched on TVA.
  • 4-1, Tampa. Thankfully, we're not subjected to any Tampa coach closeups.
  • Smoke 'em if you got 'em.
Third period:
  • Remember, this is a team that scored three goals in three minutes to beat Ottawa that time. Lots of game left.
  • At least the Bell is being vocal.
  • The coaches behind Tampa's bench are all rocking back and forth like they're holding newborn babies.
  • Team Third Period came to play. Good hustle, good hustle!
  • 14 minutes left. Habs, can you please score if only for those adorable young fans waving their towels?
  • SO CLOSE. Is Bishop hurt? Yikes. Can goalies get called for embellishment?
  • On the bright side, time for another penalty kill!
  • Another one by Habs-fans-happiness killer.
  • Looked at twitter already regretting it, but saw one "Habs in 6!" tweet.
  • OK so since the game is really over anyway and I have your attention, I'd like an opinion: should I get my bangs cut again? I'm on the fence.
  • I believe the Habs will win this series in seven games. Have at me in the comments, it's a free country.
  • Is it weird that the refs are completely refusing to call Tampa penalties? Knee on knee, man.
  • Well, well, well. Didn't we get a goal by Tom Gilbert of the fabulous mane? Thanks, Gibby. You a'ight.
  • Another Tampa powerplay! Everything is happening.
  • Nothing on the powerplay. 6:49 left, this is still very doable. Technically.
  • Gallagher goes flying over the boards. That will be on your highlights tonight, for sure.
  • That was a weird goal. 6-2. Flynn nearly saves it. Oh well.
  • Prust starting stuff up to end the game, it's kinda too late but I don't care.
  • It's times like these that I would hate being a player, facing the media after losing two at home, especially in this fashion tonight.
  • Wednesday is another day.

Habs are heading down to Tampa tomorrow, and will play back-to-back games on Wednesday and Thursday. I hope you all enjoy the rest of your evening.