When the Montreal Canadiens lost to the San Jose Sharks on Tuesday, it was after 60 minutes of hockey where they probably did enough to win. The complete opposite was true on Thursday, as the Calgary Flames dominated the Habs from pillar to post, but the hockey gods karmically willed the Tricolore to a win.
And the hockey gods used Jake Allen as their instrument of karma.
Jake, what did you eat today, buddy. pic.twitter.com/kO2BwsgOsk— Matt Drake (@DrakeMT) December 2, 2022
Allen was nothing short of magnificent against the Flames. Facing 46 shots, he stopped all but one, which was a scramble play at the side of the net following a missed interference call. It was reminiscent of Carey Price’s best works in the way that he took over the game, and presented a puzzle far too complicated for Calgary to solve.
Jake Allen is absolutely not coming 40 feet out of HIS net tonight. pic.twitter.com/17OJHxZ9ph— Matt Drake (@DrakeMT) December 2, 2022
It is fair to wonder if this is something the Canadiens should want at this stage of the rebuild. Winning games they deserve to lose won’t help their eventual draft lottery odds, nor help them avoid being dominated as they were. It makes for great television from a fan perspective, but Allen’s brilliance almost seems wasted on a rebuilding team.
He deserves a shot with a contender, and the Habs should be looking to give him that shot. Performances like that should attract some attention from teams that need help at the goaltender position, which he clearly provides. If he can commit highway robbery like that, it should be in service of a team that is going to the playoffs.
If they don’t find a trade partner, we all may have to accept that he’s going to pull off some robberies like this. While they may not be good for the draft position, at least they make for a very fun watch for his teammates and all of us at home.
Click the play button below to listen to your full Bottom Six Minutes, also available wherever you like to get your podcasts. We have a day off tomorrow, but will return when the Canadiens continue their tour of Alberta against the Edmonton Oilers on Saturday night.