Liveblog: Conference Final Game 3 – Toker smokin’, Galchenyuk OT hero and Canadiens are back in the series

Tokarski steals one

Rookie Goaltender Dustin Tokarski faced a 14 shot barrage in the first period while the Canadiens managed only four on Henrik Lundqvist.

He was beaten only Carl Hagelin.

The Canadiens slowly fought their way back into the game. Andrei Markov tied it at 1-1 early in the second period, and Daniel Briere gave the Canadiens a lead with a tick over three minutes left.

But Chris Kreider – the R.J. Umberger of this series – ticked one in off Alexei Emelin's skate with Lundqvist on the bench and 28 seconds left.

The Overtime hero?

Alex Galchenyuk, who had been invisible to that point.




Galchenyuk wins it

Tomas Plekanec threw the puck toward the net.

Alex Galchenyuk – invisible to that point – tipped it past Henrik Lundqvist.

And the Canadiens win a wild one.


Can't catch a break

With a tick over three minutes left, daniel Brière scored to give the Canadiens a rare lead.

But with Henrik Lundqvist on the bench and 28 seconds left, a shot by Chris F. Kreider ticked in off Alexei Emelin's skate.

rangers have a 36-22 shot advantage over three periods.

Tied in spite of themselves

Andrei Markov converted a pass by Max Pacioretty.

It was the Canadiens' sixth shot of the game.

Dustin Tokarski has made 26 saves through two period.

The Rangers will begin the third on a power play.


The Rangers had a 14-4 shot advantage.

The Canadiens went 12 minutes without a shot on Henrik Lundqvist.

Dustin Tokarski handled the bombardment well until Josh Gorges took him out of the play on a Rangers' 2-on-1, opening the door for Carl Hagelin's goal.

P.K. Subban was caught at the Rangers' blueline on the play.

Max Pacioretty has three of the Canadiens' shots, Daniel Brière the other.

Hope springs eternal

Your Montreal Canadiens were better in Game 2 than in Game 1.

Granted, it would have been difficult to be worse. But Game 2 possession stats favoured the Canadiens, and they'll need more of the same as the series shifts to Madison Square Garden.

Michel Therrien juggled three of his forward lines at the team's Thursday practice.

Thomas Vanek, who played less than 12 minutes in Game 2 and did not record a shot on Henrik Lundqvist, dropped down to the fourth line, with Brandon Prust and Daniel Brière.

Alex Galchenyuk moved to left wing with Tomas Plekanec and Brian Gionta. Lars Eller will centre Rene Bourque and Dale Weise, while the top line – David Desharnais between Max Pacioretty and Brendan Gallagher – remained intact.

The Canadiens will need traffic in front of Lundqvist, who stops everything he can see. Special teams have to improve. And Dustin Tokarski will have to get in touch with his inner Ken Dryden/Patrick Roy.

• Pre-game reading: A really excellent analysis of the goal that turned Game 2 around.

Jaro Halak signs with the Islanders


  1. Bozo McBozo says:

    Just got home from MSG. Can’t believe all the moaning and groaning on the Rags post-game show about the Prust hit. Give it a rest! You took out our freakin’ #1 goalie! I wish Prust had nailed Krieder.

    What can I say about The Toker? He speaks of the pompetus of goaltending!!!

  2. Say Ash says:

    The Rangers boards are tearing apart Lundqvist. It has begun…

  3. habs001 says:

    Outplayed ,out chanced but scored some dirty goals..going into this game was the way i predicted that how a Habs victory will look..Now that they got this bad game out of the way..i expect the D which was not sharp or crisp most of the night to play way better…along with the forwards…

  4. CH Marshall says:

    Gotta say that Briere goal was a great play by Vanek. So smart.

    • johnnylarue says:

      I don’t think he missed the net on purpose… but I could be wrong.

      I remember thinking, “Jeez!! What is WRONG WITH YOU!!!” shortly before Brière forced me to forgive him.

      • CH Marshall says:

        I figure he knows Henry would get in position, so he is a little billiard ball bank off the boards as Henry was sliding to the left, effectively taking him away from the other post

  5. WindsorHab-10 says:

    Don’t think Prust will get a suspension but I think loose canon Carcillo is done for the playoffs.

    • habsfan0 says:

      3 games,I believe.
      Just enough to have the Rangers eliminated.
      So,in effect,that is for the playoffs.

      • johnnylarue says:

        Obviously, that guy is a psycho-douche, but I wonder whether having him gone for the series actually favours the Rangers.–addition by subtraction.

        Who else in their lineup besides Pou-Pou can we count on to take a brain-dead penalty at an inopportune time?

        • Ron says:

          I’d be glad to see him gone. Its not the stupid pens he takes, my worry is him injuring a hab player with his f**k you atitude. We can only hope he is gone.

  6. WindsorHab-10 says:

    Great win. Create traffic in front of the so called King & your chances of scoring/winning are pretty damn good. Good call by MT to stick with Dustin. He was brilliant. Tokarski that is.

  7. HABitat4humanity says:

    vanek will get better

  8. HABitat4humanity says:

    Vanek needs to talk to Kovalchuck. Kovy use to suck at defense, now hes amazing.

  9. JohnBellyful says:

    Tokarski was great but Montreal wouldn’t have won it without Galchenyuk’s heads-up play.

  10. Timo says:

    I can only hope that the reaction to this win won’t be like that after game 7 win against boston and these players will realize that they are still trailing in the series.

  11. HardHabits says:

    And now for a synopsis of the game…

  12. habkin says:

    Hey Timo, I understand your thoughts. Weaver had difficulty tonight also. I say inject two new players into the line up on Sunday. Bournival and Tinordi…I am going to get slained for saying so but it would inject new, hungry blood. If Prust is out, which I think not, then White. If we do tie this series up, we will win the series. It will be a little like 1986:)

  13. johnnylarue says:

    Oooooh–Vigneault gettin’ snippy! I like it.

    Well anyway, like I was saying: Price? Pfff. Who needs him!

  14. DDO_Habs_Fan says:

    If the Habs PP can do anything, they can take these guys. The Rangers are simply dominating special teams.

    Anyway, my final comment is to praise DD and Gally tonight. Unbelievable effort and heart tonight. I was wrong about Vanek playing on the top line. He’s a @$@^& slacker.

  15. Strummer says:

    People were down on Prust before the game but I think he set the tone with a big hit and some further physicality that put the Rags off their game.

    “You are not T.J. Oshie. Do not shoot pucks at people without a helmet.”.

  16. Say Ash says:

    And is there any less intimidating building to play in than MSG? Maybe it’s how they mic it for TV I dunno

  17. HardHabits says:

    4 of the five goals were off of bounces, only Markov’s goal was a pure goal scorer’s goal. That goes to show the level of goaltending in this series. Tokarski. What more can be said. To step in and put the pressure on a stalwart veteran like Lundqvist is exceptional for a rookie. Habs need to play better though. They haven’t looked good yet this series but if they wake up… and I think they will… we could be in for another long and gruelling series folks.

    • johnnylarue says:

      Cherry was apt to point out that the Habs look they blew their wad, so to speak, on the Boston series.

      For a fast team, they sure don’t look it against these here Rangers.

      • HardHabits says:

        It’s obvious the Habs blew their load last series.

        However, Prust did his part this game to ramp up the testosterone and get the mojo back, pump some back blood in so to speak.

        Now the teams have a good hate going on for each other so I expect the Habs to play better next game. The Rangers are also running on fumes since the funeral for Marty St. Louis’ mom and there could be an effective let down period now that there’s been closure. Don’t forget the Rangers also had an emotional and draining series too. It is the Rangers who are in danger of being in post load blowing mode.

        Obviously next game is huge.

        • johnnylarue says:

          Great points re: the magical inspiration-dust wearing off for the Rangers. A win can do a whole lot for the momentum of a series–and the pressure is now squarely on the Rags for Game 4.

          Ditto for Prust: he stepped up and almost single-handedly lifted the fog off of this strange, almost emotionless series. Without a doubt, his most effective game of these playoffs so far. (And I wouldn’t even have played him tonight, I admit.)

          I will dare to dream again. Just a little.

        • JohnBellyful says:

          Gentlemen — wad, load?
          May I suggest you employ a different metaphor. One that’s proper but unsemenly.

          • johnnylarue says:

            Oh! I was using ‘wad’ to refer to a stack of cash… Here, let me use it in a sentence:

            The young man blew his wad on an expensive box of Kleenex.

  18. CHicoHab says:

    I said we were an 8-5 team so far in these playoffs. And I said no reason we can’t win on the road with a back up goaltender because we’ve done it before. Case and point. We are now 9-5 thank you.

  19. Timo says:

    Next game, can we get the same refs that did game 7 vs Boston?

  20. DDO_Habs_Fan says:

    McDonaugh continued his point streak tonight…oops…LOL.

    Better than PK…yeah right…LMFAO

  21. PK says:

    Like I said earlier … Tokarski = Halak II

    >>>>> Les Canadiens sont là

  22. Strummer says:

    TSN panel- O’Neil and Ward- this game was a turning point. Toker stole one. He belongs now.

    “You are not T.J. Oshie. Do not shoot pucks at people without a helmet.”.

  23. Vid says:

    Gorges should have asked Therrien BEFORE the game to be the starting goalie. What the heck was he doing trying to take over Tokarski’s position. So impolite.

    Markov scores finally. Hopefully this kickstarts Markov’s offense because you can’t rely entirely on Subban for offense from the blue line.

    It’s amazing the stark contrast between the Habs D and Rangers D. Rangers D as a group are significantly better. McDonagh is so great but it seems if you hit the Rangers D more then they will cough up the puck. Habs need to do more of that.

    I guess Therrien knows what he’s doing when he assembles one of the most expensive 4th lines ever. It couldn’t be any more expensive unless we still had Gomez.

    I also wonder if the key to getting rebounds from Lundqvist is to shoot right at him like how a tennis player will sometimes serve to the body. Lundqvist seemed to be handcuffed by a few of those shots including Pleks’ shot that lead to Galchenyuk almost scoring with his face. So many ugly goals but I’ll take it.

    Is Tokarski the Habs antidote to Marty St. Louis? I hope so.

    It’s great to see some of our young players having such a significant impact in the games. It’s also great seeing previously maligned players coming up clutch as well.

    Anything is possible now, going forward.

  24. Strummer says:

    On the OT goal Chucky showed the hands, the skill and the positioning of an elite talent.

    “You are not T.J. Oshie. Do not shoot pucks at people without a helmet.”.

  25. Timo says:

    So what have we learned tonight?

    1. Despite the win Therrien’s line are awful
    2. Gorges needs a trip to the pressbox
    3. Vanek needs to be back on the top line with Pacioretty and DD
    4. Plekanec can’t win a faceoff worth sh!t
    5. Habs need to be meaner… they need to have players to can make douchebags like Kreider pay

  26. 24AW says:

    we played a good 3rd period and in overtime, thanks to our buddy Tokarski he kept us in there and they got a win for him, having said that. Pittsburgh won 1-Game and where are they now anyway, as long as Tokarski can keep us in there, that’s the only chance we have . our offense, who knows. 4-Goals one game, lucky to get 1-the next maybe they can make a series out of this keeping my fingers crossed.

  27. Strummer says:

    Strummer says:
    May 22, 2014 at 2:18 pm After 5 wins in a row King Henrik is due to suck.
    So is McDonagh who had Zero points in his first 10 playoff games.

    Law of averages also says the guys that brought offense to Habs in the first 2 rounds – Vanek, Briere, Subban, Plek, Bourque, Gally are due tonight as well

    So-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o as I was saying……

    “You are not T.J. Oshie. Do not shoot pucks at people without a helmet.”.

  28. wild flower says:

    For parts of the game the only Hab who looked like he cared was Prust. Habs looked small and slow tonight. Vanek looked like he was the odd man out during the post game celebrations.

    We don’t have many players who skate like some of Rangers. Who is there power skating guru?

  29. PK says:

    Tokarski will take the Habs to the Final.
    AV will know how to pronounce his name by the end of this series.


    >>>>> Les Canadiens sont là

  30. johnnylarue says:


  31. DDO_Habs_Fan says:

    Rangers crying about Prust’s hit…pathetic. Stepan was on the ice like he was concussed and comes back 5 min later and is taking runs at people. With Dorsett diving, the Rangers did look like a Vigneault team with all the embellishing (e.g., the Canucks).

  32. scamorza says:

    Just finishing watching the game -PVRed it wow frigging Toker eh? BTW I wrote below this morning at 630 or so so got the score kinda right Plecky didn’t score but well he really hopefully shut up some of you for one night at least . All I know is I gotta playoff the lottery tomorrow and I will continue have pizza and beer before sleeping into the arms of Morpeus…

    Just woke up from dreaming that the habs win tonight either 2-1 or 3-2 but it was in OT and Plekanec scores off a rebound. Who would have thunk that – Plekanec driving to the net? Just watched the Nilan Demers talk before going to bed so that may explain it . I’ll take any part of that dream coming true. Flying back home so will not be watching live but would be nice to see it envelop as it did in the dream!
    come to Dorion suits where you get no….”hassoles” _ Yvon Lambert
    come to Dorion suits where you get no….”hassoles” _ Yvon Lambert

  33. habsfan0 says:

    The Bruins are a better team than the Rangers.
    If we can beat Boston,We can beat the Rangers.
    The Rangers lost 3 games to the Flyers and 3 games to the Penguins.
    They should lose 4 games to the Habs now,particularly since we have Galchenyuk in the lineup,who was not available to us for the first 2 rounds.

    • PK says:

      Bourny does not score that OT winner.
      Good to have Alex back in the lineup.

      >>>>> Les Canadiens sont là

    • MontrealAtheist says:

      > The Bruins are a better team than the Rangers.
      > If we can beat Boston,We can beat the Rangers.

      It’s not as simple as that, it all comes down to the matchups and whether their style suits us. The Rangers’ style is very different from the Bruins.

      Just remember 2010: we beat the Penguins and Capitals, arguably the best two teams in the conference, yet we got slaughtered by the Flyers.

      • habsfan0 says:

        In 2010,it was the Habs who went through 2 gruelling 7 game series before the Conference Final.
        This year,it’s the Rangers.

        • ianism says:

          the flyers had only played 2 games less to that point. both teams were coming off hugely emotional series. the flyers responded better.

          i feel the habs have been emotionally flat against the rangers – their series vs the bruins (as everyone here knows) was really draining. but this game could be the game they need to get their heads back in it.

  34. Say Ash says:

    You’re off the case, Tokarski!

  35. PK says:

    Support the young players … the future of the Habs.
    MT giving a lot of praise to his young guns: AG27 and DT35

    Prust is out for blood … Good team player

    >>>>> Les Canadiens sont là

  36. Coach K says:

    The geek-of-the-week stats types tell us that whichever team wins game 3 of a 7 game series more often than not, wins the series.
    Come on boys…prove ’em right!!!

    —When Hell freezes over, I’ll play hockey there too—

  37. jctremblay says:

    They won a game that they should have lost, IMO..there is no more valuable commodity in the SC playoffs, folks! We all tend to remember the great Habs teams rolling over their opponents with impunity in the past, but there were many games like this one as well. If you find a way to win them, you put doubt in your opponents minds, and it can frequently kickstart a team to another gear. The Habs have to find that gear…right now. Plekanek and his friends should burn the tapes in their minds of this game..nothing good will come of rehashing it. Pleks played a worse game against Boston and didn’t repeat it. Do so again, please..LOL! This Rangers team is fast, has size…and they were getting lights out goaltending. But you have to believe Lunquist is starting to wonder who he lost to a kid like Tokarski. We win Sunday and all bets are off..things can change that quickly this year in ye olde NHL.

  38. DipsyDoodler says:

    Am I deluded? I thought we played them even from about the halfway point of the game.

    Anyways, now we know we have a good keeper.

    Moving. Forward.

  39. tab says:

    Think good things, good things happen.
    We all need to make sign of the cross like josh George’s does before he starts each period, just before start of next game after anthem.

  40. monmick says:

    The “New Therrien” is somewhat endearing….

    ~~~> Mathematically eliminated…

  41. AH says:

    I figured out the Habs strategy for this series, the old Muhammad Ali rope a dope! LOL!

    • Mr_MacDougall says:

      Game 1 is a mulligan.. Had Price not been injured it would have been 2-1 after 2 periods and the Habs were beginning to dominate.. I say we’d have do I aged the 3rd in game 1 had Carey not gone down… Those 2 late goals were injury related IMO

      We controlled game 2 but lost.. Were,outplayed tonight and got the W

      ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

  42. HairyHabist says:

    Nobody on the ice for either team deserved the win more than Tokarski.

    Gorges took him out of the play on the 1st goal. And the 2nd goal went in of Emelin’s skate. Aside from those mistakes by his D his play was brilliant.

    I’m happy the Habs won. But I’m especially happy the kid got the win.

    • Mr_MacDougall says:

      Great performance for your first playoff victory.. Sounded very confident in the post game interview, well spoken and thoughtful.

      ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

  43. UKRAINIANhab says:

    It is 6:40 am here in Ukraine and im tired af. Rangers are going to have nightmares of Tokarski. Great play by Pleks and Galchenyuk.

    Lets return to Montreal @ 2-2!

  44. Mr_MacDougall says:

    HUGE pressure on the Rags in game 4… Going back to Montreal 2-2 would be horrific! The Bell Center would give the boys a 1-0 lead off the Hop…

    Tokarski has been phenomenal, All bad bounces except for the Nash goal..

    ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

  45. PK says:

    Go Habs Go!!!!
    Great roller coaster ride this year!

    >>>>> Les Canadiens sont là

  46. DDO_Habs_Fan says:

    Thank god I was wrong about benching Prust. He came out and did exactly what I was waiting for. Finally someone clobbered one of the Rangers who are “phony” tough. Can’t believe the Habs did not get a two man advantage when Carcillo man-handled a linesman…brutal.

  47. Say Ash says:

    Tokarski & Bobrovski was a great 70s cop show.

  48. Mr. Biter says:

    As I posted earlier today, we need more than 1 goal to win and Toker is a very good goalie. Budda may be playing for another team next year.
    Poor horses pulling the band wagon, it just got a lot heavier with people jumping back on.

    Mr. Biter
    No Guts No Glory

    • PK says:

      Budaj is a good sport but he likely does not have a future in Montreal …

      >>>>> Les Canadiens sont là

      • Mr. Biter says:

        Writing was on the ice when they gave Toker a 3 year contract and yes Budaj has been a great back-up but when they showed Toker before the game in the Habs dressing room Budaj did not look to Happy.

        Mr. Biter
        No Guts No Glory

  49. PK says:

    Tokarski did what he had to do!
    Hope the team in front of him starts playing with confidence.
    They should stop worrying that Price is not in net.
    Rags are there for the taking.

    Prust, Gallagher, Markov were really good.
    Emelin feels better, now.
    AG 27 comes through.

    >>>>> Les Canadiens sont là

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