The Canadiens win was driven by their stars and unsung heroes

After a slow start, the Canadiens woke up and scored when it counted.

The Montreal Canadiens have been slumping recently. The power play isn’t generating much of anything, and at even strength the offence was struggling to find their legs. Through the first two periods against the Colorado Avalanche, a similar tale was being written. The Canadiens had their chances but lacked any sort of finish to make them truly count.

Then, Montreal found a breakthrough with their special teams, and it wasn’t on their power play either. After Shea Weber blasted a shot off the post on a power play, the Canadiens had to kill a penalty, and it was there where Brett Kulak was the unlikely hero with a shorthanded goal off a Phillip Danault face-off win.

From there the Canadiens offence absolutely buried the Avalanche on the offensive side of the puck, culminating in Jonathan Drouin capping off a fantastic game with a picturesque set up on a Jesperi Kotkaniemi goal to make it a two-goal lead. Jordie Benn sealed the deal with a long-range empty-net goal, while Carey Price slammed the door shut for the shutout win.

The story of the game was the Canadiens’ stars (Price, Drouin, Weber) all playing up to their highest level. While the unsung heroes, or players without as much hype (Kulak, Danault, Benn), all playing integral roles in generating a win.

On defence it’s worth noting the standout play once again of Victor Mete. The young defender played more than Weber and Jeff Petry at five-on-five against Colorado. He trailed behind just those two players in total ice time, without the benefit of power-play time.

This is how the Canadiens ran over teams earlier in the year. They were getting contributions from every line and defensive pairing, even if they weren’t on the score sheet. With four games in short order next week, Montreal will need to distill their third-period domination into a 60-minute essence.

First up for them — their forever rival — the Boston Bruins.

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