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Taking a look back at Tomas Plekanec’s best moments in Montreal

Taking a trip down a turtleneck-strewn memory lane for the Canadiens’ loyal Czech.

Edmonton Oilers v Montreal Canadiens Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images

Drafted in 2001, and joining the Montreal Canadiens’ AHL club in 2002, Tomas Plekanec has spent the better part of two decades donning some form of a Canadiens sweater. With that time comes a number of memorable moments for the Czech forward, from his first NHL goal to improbable short-handed tallies to end the season. Plekanec has seen pretty much everything there is to see during his NHL tenure, and here are just a few small samples of his time in Montreal.

Five-on-three shorthanded goal vs. Toronto

It was a rough year for the Canadiens in 2012 as injuries, poor coaching, and a multitude of other factors led to one of their worst seasons of all time. Yet in the last game of the year against their forever rivals, the Toronto Maple Leafs, it would be Plekanec who gave the fans something to cheer about. He poked the puck off of Jake Gardiner’s stick and in a five-on-three penalty kill situation, he scored the game’s opening goal.

Shorthanded goals would become quite the theme for him.

Plekanec and Pacioretty play tic-tac-toe

Smart stick placement once again sends the Canadiens away on a shorthanded rush, this time with Max Pacioretty flanking Plekanec. Multiple back and forth passes left Henrik Lundqvist swimming in his net, and the result was a fantastic goal to open the scoring.

#35 Tomas Plekanec scores his first

While he’s most known for rocking the number fourteen on his sweater for most of his career, Plekanec’s first goal came in a different sweater. Mike Ribeiro worked the puck behind the net and found a young Plekanec coming into the faceoff circle. One perfect pass later and Plekanec buried the puck behind Ed Belfour for his first NHL goal.

Tomas Plekanec: Playoff hero

The improbable 2010 run to the Eastern Conference Final was arguably the most fun fans had in awhile. The tone of the entire run was set in game one when the underdog Canadiens bested the Washington Capitals thanks to this overtime winner from Plekanec.

He pulled some similar magic out of his hat in the 2016 playoffs as well. With the Rangers leading by a goal, the wily Plekanec converted an Alexander Radulov feed to force overtime in the dying seconds of game two.

1000th Game Goal

There’s a lot to be said about getting to 1000 career games in the NHL. It’s hard work and dedication in a league that can beat up even the best players. In Plekanec’s 1000th career game, he punctuated the occasion with a goal that was quintessentially him. He blew by the Red Wings defence, faked the slapshot from the circle, got behind Jimmy Howard and banked the puck in off of him. It was clever, sneaky, and skilled. Just like Plekanec over the course of his career.

His teammates try on the infamous turtleneck

While it’s become a bit of a cult icon in Montreal for Plekanec, his teammates do not appear to be big fans of his fashion choice.

That, however, didn’t stop them the previous year from paying tribute to their long-time friend in his first game ever against his old club.

Share your own Tomas Plekanec memories and thoughts below. It’s been a long career and this is only a small sampling of what he is remembered for in his time in Montreal.