White's Return Dashed by Shootout Loss
It was yet another intense, as-prescribed head-to-head with the Boston Bruins on Wednesday night, and for once the Habs were the ones to pull themselves back from a multi-goal deficit. Extra time, however, did not balance in the favour of Randy Cunneyworth's Canadiens as Tyler Seguin procured his team a shootout win by scoring the only goal in the one-on-one competiton.
The physicality continued in the crease, as four goaltender interference penalties were called during the game, two of them at the same time. It seemed as though the referees couldn't put their whistles away, regardless of how much blue paint was (or wasn't) involved. On the scoresheet, it was playoff villain Andrew Ference who opened the scoring (but kept all equipment, er, intact).
At the end of the period, Lars Eller took a double high-sticking call against the Bruins' David Krejci. In the opening moments of the second, however, Mathieu Darche scored a shorthanded goal off a feed from P.K. Subban to pull the teams even at one.
Then, in what could be called a Habs' fan worst nightmare, the duo of Kaberle and Campoli just about gift-wrapped a highlight-reel slump-breaker for one familiar face belonging to Benoit Pouliot, who hadn't scored in sixteen games. Patrice Bergeron later doubled the Bruins' lead and the third period suddenly became a do-or-die one for the Habs.
Max Pacioretty brought them to within one at 3:37 of the final frame. Neither team seemed intent on keeping the puck to themselves for much of the game, as the teams combined for 18 giveaways. One of those was a sloppy play by Zdeno Chara that wound up on the stick of Erik Cole and resulted in his 22nd of the season. Boston managed just two shots on goal in the third.
Overtime yielded nothing for the two clubs. David Krejci hit the post in the shootout, and Rene Bourque, Max Pacioretty and Lars Eller were all stopped by Tim Thomas. Only Seguin was able to capitalize on his chance.
Brad Marchand got close to outdoing himself in this game, clipping Alexei Emelin near the end of the period and later taking a run at friend-turned-foe Subban for good measure. Then, after Canadiens' fans cheered Zdeno Chara's getting hit in the face with a shot by Tomas Plekanec, he had this to say:
"That's embarrassing. It's very classless. It could've been dangerous."
He later went on to talk about how fan interests should be progressing more in the way of protecting players and making the game safer. Uh huh.
★Tyler Seguin, Boston Bruins (1A, -1, 4 SOG, shootout winner, 20:42 TOI)
★★Erik Cole, Montreal Canadiens (1G, 1A, +2, 3 SOG, 19:46 TOI)
★★★Patrice Bergeron, Boston Bruins (1G, 5 SOG, 23:23 TOI)
Shots on Goal