With losses in three of four games prior to Monday, the Montreal Canadiens were in need of a win to keep pace with the Boston Bruins in the Atlantic Division.
That’s exactly what they got, and they got it with solid goaltending from Carey Price. He might not have been busy through two periods, facing only 11 shots, but he was called upon to secure the victory for his team in the third.
The Canadiens eventually defeated the Florida Panthers by a final score of 2-1. Price was called upon to make 16 saves in the third period, with his team up by a goal and the Panthers pressing for the equalizer.
“He’s like a closer in baseball,” said Habs’ head coach Michel Therrien, as per Conor McKenna, host of the Canadiens radio broadcast on TSN 690.
Price, who hails from British Columbia, Canada, has been picked by numerous hockey pundits to be one of the three goalies named to Canada’s men’s Olympic hockey team – the roster gets announced Tuesday morning.
In some ways, it really felt like their first-round series.
For all the talent on both ends of the rink with the Detroit Red Wings and Tampa Bay Lightning, each squad can really smother opponents defensively when things go that way.
Through two periods, the two teams were very quiet. Things really picked up when Justin Abdelkader unleashed a big hit, a moment that injected enough life into the proceedings for the Red Wings to eventually build a 3-1 win.
Maybe they’re slipping under the radar a bit compared to previous iterations of the team, but it’s interesting that the Red Wings are now undefeated in three games.
They’ve been impressive at times, too, outscoring opponents by a combined score of 11-4.
Call it a refreshing time after Mike Babcock or merely carryover from a subtly solid run last season, but either way, the Red Wings may just be able to keep up their end of a brewing rivalry.
Taking three games to score your first NHL goal isn’t a big deal, unless you’re someone like Connor McDavid.
The mega-hyped wunderkind must feel relieved to finally find the net, as he tied tonight’s Edmonton Oilers – Dallas Stars skirmish with a 2-2 deflection goal, which you can watch above this post’s headline.
To no surprise, there were plenty of reactions, including Pierre LeBrun’s tweet (which inspired part of this headline).
Of course, there were the inevitable Wayne Gretzky comparisons:
Interesting thing you might not consider: Stars fans will have to stomach this one even more frequently than that time Patrik Stefan biffed that empty-netter (also against the Oilers):
McDavid may have also delivered his first questionable check, too: