Canadiens @ Stars Top Six Minutes: Phillip Danault, Antti Niemi help make it a winning road trip

Jeff Petry’s overtime goal sealed a great trip for Montreal.

First period

  • Hey, it’s Mike Johnson. Nice of TSN to fly him all the way to Dallas for this last game on the road.
  • Victor Mete thought Shea Weber would be a good pass option for a breakout pass. Weber clearly thought otherwise.
  • There can’t be a whole lot of blood in that body. Better get the leak in Mete’s fixed stat.
  • Two good glove saves from Antti Niemi early.
  • Brendan Gallagher fires one of the post. He’s looking engaged to start.
  • And there’s a big save from Niemi.
  • “There can be only one!” screams Jeff Petry as he squishes Dallas’s Finnish rookie, Miro Heiskanen, on the glass.
  • Dallas is getting the lion’s share of zone time in the first half of the period.
  • Maybe Kotkaniemi wants to be the only big smiler in the game as well, as he eliminates Alexander Radulov in his own end.
  • Some offsides of several feet for the Canadiens now. Need a little more patience on the entries.
  • Well it’s impossible to go over the line early when Mete is the one carrying the puck. Not a bad rush for the light-headed defenceman.
  • Just about a goal for Kotkaniemi. Just missed an open net. He could probably have twice as many points as he does this year.
  • Johnson agrees.
  • Mete came to play (again) tonight.
  • Spezza can’t put the puck in, but decided Niemi will do just as well.
  • Who is this Jordie Benn? At this rate the Oilers may have to throw in a first-round pick when McDavid comes to Montreal.
  • Brett Kulak doing good work around the net. Not his, Dallas’s a surprising shift from the third pairing.
  • Not much of a surprise who the goal-scorer is. Is Phillip Danault headed toward another three-point game.
  • Ben Bishop is complaining about something. The ref gets saved by the bell./

Second period

  • Andrew Shaw won’t be returning to this game. Hopefully it’s nothing serious, because he’s been a big piece of the team of late.
  • Mete comes close again. If only he’d chosen horseshoes for his profession he wouldn’t be nearly so frustrated. And probably a bit less bloody.
  • Kotkaniemi just chopped the puck on his backhand right onto the tape or Artturi Lehkonen. Not bad.
  • The end of the shift isn’t so good, as the Finnish contingent gets scored on.
  • Weber just about kept Roope Hintz from making it to 2019.
  • Power play time. Good chance to update the lineups for the USA-Finland game. Hey, Cayden Primeau’s playing tonight. Not a good time for a bug to be going through the top teams of Group B at the World Juniors.
  • And the power play is over.
  • Nice move by Max Domi to gain the line. Unfortunately, he was the third Hab to cross it.
  • Big lunging save from Niemi on Radek Faksa.
  • No Jamie Benn or Tyler Seguin on the Stars’ power play. Take that ... somebody. I don’t know if the organization has figured out exactly who the enemy is here.
  • Kotkaniemi dents another post. Any talentless hack can hit the 4’ x 6’ mesh. Those posts are tiny.
  • Bishop has decided to sit in the net. I anticipate another conversation with the ref.
  • Weber probably just saved a goal by breaking up a Royal Road pass.
  • A bit unorthodox, but another big cross-crease save from Niemi.
  • So close to a short-handed breakaway for Paul Byron. It’s been a while since we’ve seen one of those.
  • Well, Benn was on that power play. And it’s 2-1 Dallas.
  • And Russia scored to go up 2-1 as well. At least Alexander Romanov got an assist. I won’t spoil too much for those of you recording the game./

Third period

  • Mete was going into the corner with two Stars, and called to Weber for help before even engaging. At least he knows his weaknesses.
  • Danault missed his shot. That’s not supposed to happen.
  • Kenny Agostino gets a turn on the Finnish Line. Sounds a bit Finnish I suppose.
  • Max Domi getting a bit of a talkin’-to from Claude Julien. Did the forward try to chirp Benn and Seguin? Probably.
  • Mete uses his stick like a fishing lure on a 2-on-1 defence. Stars don’t score, so it clearly worked.
  • Danault again! This guy’s pretty good.
  • Bishop goes down hard. As he does. Ref not buying what he’s trying to sell.
  • Seriously, five goals, four assists, donated $5000 to charity. It’s been a good road trip for Danault.
  • Bishop taunts Agostino by leaving the puck in the crease. Agostino pokes at. Stars get upset. Johnson is unsympathetic.
  • Habs are desperate to grab this point. Energy high on both sides to play out the final minutes of the third.
  • And with that, the Canadiens finish above a .500 points percentage on the December road trip. A win in Tampa Bay would have been incredible, but 7 of 12 points is a great result nonetheless./


  • Now that the teams have secured their point, do we see a looser approach in overtime?
  • Jeff Petry catches up to Paul Byron and nets the overtime-winner! An excellent effort from the defenceman.
  • So make that eight of 12 points. Very good indeed.
  • And it’s after midnight here in Nova Scotia, so Happy New Year to you all, and thanks for visiting EOTP over 15 million times in 2018!/

Highlight of the night

EOTP 3 Stars

3) You know they do

2) One of the most engaging analysts in the sport

1) Can the Habs wear their whites at home so he thinks he’s still on the road?

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