Claude Julien elected to go with his fourth line to start, and the Bruins countered with their best line. Though Boston had more jump, the Habs picked up the first two shots of the game.
The Bruins bore down after that though, peppering Carey Price with a quick salvo. He was able to turn them all aside. Montreal answered in kind after the first break, and though Mikey Reilly took a tripping call behind his own net, the score remained 0-0 through the first 10 minutes.
Price continued to come up big, turning aside a sprinting two-on-none from Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak after a Joel Armia turnover. The youngest and oldest guys on the ice both went to the box with just over six to go when Jesperi Kotkaniemi and Zdeno Chara took off-setting minors. Unfortunately, Marchand made good, opening the scoring at 15:09 from Patrice Bergeron and Matt Grzelcyk.
Montreal skated hard, and Nicolas Deslauriers dropped the gloves with Kevan Miller with just under four to go in the period.
Nic Deslauriers and Kevan Miller throwing some serious bombs pic.twitter.com/9sXI49FB9r— Scott Matla (@scottmatla) January 15, 2019
The Habs had a few more good shifts after the fight, and they paid off. Phillip Danault won an offensive-zone faceoff, Jeff Petry wound up for a big shot, and Brendan Gallagher tipped the puck in with 1:15 to go.
Montreal came out flying in the second, and Tomas Tatar had a terrific opportunity on Tuukka Rask that would have gone in had he been able to elevate the puck. Boston responded, but Price one again came up big in a series of scrambles.
Carey Price flashing the leather in Boston tonight! pic.twitter.com/He2WDSATah— Scott Matla (@scottmatla) January 15, 2019
Price continued to be the story of the game through the middle stages of the second, making big saves, and making them with ease as Boston outshot Montreal 12-6. Around the 15-minute mark, the Gallagher line, which had been throughout the most electric of the trios, nearly put the Canadiens ahead.
Price remained stellar as the Canadiens were forced to play down a man, and then Paul Byron got on his horse and sprinted away from Bergeron to make it 2-1 short-handed.
There was a big kerfuffle by the benches in the last minute between (to nobody’s surprise) Gallagher and Max Domi for Montreal, Chara, and Jake DeBrusk for Boston. DeBrusk and Domi got off-setting roughing minors, and when the period came to an end, the Canadiens had a far more respectable second-period shot count as well as the lead.
The third opened with absolute chaos. Victor Mete drove the net hard, was hauled down, everyone flew into Rask, and then Artturi Lehkonen and Shea Weber both got shots off just to make sure everyone was awake.
Pastrnak responded, but luck and Price were with the Habs as Boston continued to outshoot the Canadiens.
Danault and Jonathan Drouin quietly had a very strong game throughout, but were especially noticeable as the period passed the halfway mark.
Boston continued to pressure, but again, Price was there to meet them, and when he wasn’t, the Bruins out-deked themselves, and otherwise failed to capitalize.
Unfortunately, Michael Chaput took a bad penalty, putting the puck over the glass with a little more than two minutes to go. Boston pulled Rask for the extra skater on the advantage, and David Krejci tied it up on a heavily screened Price with just 38 seconds to go.
In the end, Montreal got those two points after all. Domi threw a puck on net in overtime, it rebounded, and Petry batted the puck past Rask as he took on the role of a baseball player instead of a stellar defenseman.
So, despite being outshot 43-22, Montreal came away with two points against their age-old rival, who also happens to be immediately ahead of them in the playoff race.
- Carey Price was phenomenal, stopping 41 shots and generally being the rock that fans have come to expect.
- Just your regular reminder that Marc Bergevin got Jeff Petry for peanuts, and no, Edmonton, you can’t have him back.
- The Boston/Montreal rivalry remains the best, and it’s even better when the Habs win! And this game had it all, what with Gallagher and Chara going at each other almost every shift, Price being on fire, having a big fight, a few scuffles, and Byron and Petry doing Byron and Petry things.
- Gallagher goals remain the best goals, and Gallagher goals against Boston are the best of the best.