Liveblog: Game 77 – Playoff preview? Let’s hope not. Lightning win easily


Misleading score

Until Alex Killorn's empty-netter, it looked like the fourth 2-1 game of the season between these teams.

But if it weren't for Carey Price's brilliance, Tampa Bay would have won 6-1.

Brendan Gallagher opened the scoring with his 19th and the Canadiens played a strong first period.

But the home team dominated the final 40 minutes, getting goals by Ryan Callahan, Tyler Johnson (shorthanded) and an empty-netter by Montreal native Alex Killorn.

Carey Price made 30 saves and was the game's First Star.

The Canadiens had 26 shots on Ben Bishop.

The win lifted Tampa Bay past the Canadiens into second place in the Atlantic Division.

Good news: Losses by Washington and New Jersey clinched a playoff berth for the CH.

Bad news: Douglas Murray almost certainly will be suspended for a late-game elbow on Mike Kostka.

Shortie is winner

With the Canadiens on a power play, the puck skipped on Andrei Markov and onto the stick of Tyler Johnson, who beat Carey Price to break a 1-1 tie.

Alex Killorn's empty-netter made it 3-1.

Lightning outshot the Canadiens 12-6, 33-26 on the game.

One scored, one disallowed

Taking advantage of a screw-up at the Canadiens blueline, Ryan Callahan lifted a backhander past Carey Price during a Tampa Bay power play.

Price later made a miraculous save on Teddy Purcell.

Purcell scored at the end of the period, but the goal was disallowed because J.T. Brown was in the crease and interfered with Price.

Replay showed no interference.

Another great night for Chris Lee.

Shots were 11-10 for the home team.

CH break on top

Teddy Purcell hit the goal post behind Carey Price, and the Canadiens goaltender made five frantic stops during a hectic sequence.

Canadiens took almost seven minutes to get their first shot on goal.

But the only goal of the period was scored by Brendan Gallagher, who got his 19th by tipping a loose puck past Ben Bishop.

Shots were 10-10.

Playoff preview?

It's likely the Canadiens and Tampa Bay will hook up in the first round of the Eastern Conference playoffs.

Still to be determined is home-ice advantage.

The Tuesday tilt is a classic four-pointer: Canadiens sit second in the Atlantic Division, two points ahead of TB, but the Lightning have a game in hand. Both teams have been hot in their last 10: The Canadiens are 8-2, TB 7-1-2.

This is the last regular-season game between the teams. All three meetings to date have gone to Overtime, and two were decided by Shootouts. TB has been on the long end of two of the 2-1 final scores.

We're talkin' tight, and this should be a good one.

Likely Lightning lines: Purcell-Stamkos-Brown, Palat-Filppula-Callahan, Killorn-Johnson-Kucherov, Malone-Thompson-Crombeen.

For the Canadiens, Lars Eller has moved onto the third line with Daniel Brière and Brian Gionta. Rene Bourque is bumped down to the fourth line with Ryan White and Michäel Bournival.

Puck drops 7:40ish.

Check back later for live game blogging.


  1. db says:

    Nice crosschecks on Price..

  2. ABHabsfan says:

    What a friggin’ save that was! Holy Crap!!

  3. Prop says:

    Wow, Price is like a cat chasing a laser dot.


  4. UKRAINIANhab says:

    Lightning love to carry the puck, a lot of 1 man shows

  5. Mr_MacDougall says:

    Why did Lee not give Bourque a penalty for … Getting a breakaway?

    ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

  6. UKRAINIANhab says:

    Another hook on pleks there?

  7. w.p.d says:

    Can’t remember the last time Markov hit the net from the point

  8. ooder says:

    As bourque was streaking in I told my bro that he will miss the net. I must have a gift

  9. w.p.d says:

    The Florida sun and fun is not good for the habs game.

  10. Habilis says:

    Rene Bourque is an amazing hockey player for like 10 seconds every game. So weird.

  11. Black Horse says:

    I can’t recall the last time Montreal scored on a breakaway.

  12. NLhabsfan says:

    Bourque is mush better after a little layoff:)

  13. w.p.d says:

    Well, up impressive start.

  14. yeg hab fan says:

    wtf, was that bork speeding in

  15. UKRAINIANhab says:


  16. UKRAINIANhab says:

    Will Murray play in the playoffs??

  17. ABHabsfan says:

    not much possession for the CH

  18. Danno says:

    Vanek’s right. Blown call


    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
    Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

  19. Fansincebirth says:

    Briere is short….he has to screw up 🙂

  20. UKRAINIANhab says:

    Seems like ok attendance…

  21. byrneoNL says:

    It would seem Tampa Bay is accustomed to playing in low light conditions. To counter this, the Bell Centre maintenance staff should crank up the light wattage so the TB players are all blinded and squinting for the first period

  22. Samovich says:

    Who has the bigger attendance? the Rays or lightning? Go Habs and go Expos!

  23. ABHabsfan says:

    gotta go 5-hole on Bishop. Big tall goalies have trouble finding their feet

  24. Black Horse says:

    Habs have to shoot high blocker on Bishop.

  25. Danno says:

    Chris Lee???



    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
    Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

  26. TB seats 21000, 15,000 are Habs fans!

    Shane Oliver
    Twitter @Sholi2000
    Custom Sports Figures
    Congrats Carey Price and PK Subban, Montreal’s Gold Medal Members!

  27. Kimberly2u says:

    Go Habs go!!

  28. w.p.d says:

    Good thing they’re not at the Bell Center or we would have had another Molson cup presentation. We all know how those games turn out.

  29. B says:

    Tampa hasn’t won a game vs a team currently in a playoff spot since Feb. 8th.

    –Go Habs Go!–

  30. jols says:

    Go Habs Go!!!

  31. UKRAINIANhab says:

    Filppula was a great signing

  32. Habcouver says:

    Nice anthem 🙂

    We Are (Not) All Canucks.
    Proudly Canadian but passionately Canadien!

  33. duffy says:

    Claude Loisselle on hockey central today with every excuse on why Leafs lost last eight. Poor scheduling, no breaks by Refs, Bad luck, everything but admitting his players suck

  34. MICP says:

    All lightning tonight.
    Hab fans call for the head of mt.

  35. Black Horse says:

    Our Habs will send a message to the Lighting tonight. They will give them a taste of what is to come in the Playoffs!

    Be afraid Tampa. Be very afraid!

  36. slyCH says:

    Any stream suggestions beside’s HABSONLINETV which has been a Russian roulette game at best lately or ATDHE which rarely lead me to the RDS feed would be greatly appreciated. Anything..

  37. UKRAINIANhab says:

    Hedman didn’t even make Sweden. Can’t be that good

  38. slapshot777 says:

    Bourque has no right to bitch about anything with the way he has played all season. He hasn’t played well at all so he is deserving of nothing. If this is the attitude he is taking now I can’t see him playing in the playoffs unless the Habs are stuck for a forward.

    • likehoy says:

      Bourque was actually quite impressive last year in the playoffs. He looked interested

      • slapshot777 says:

        Well if he wants to play then earn the ice time rather than float up and down the ice. These guys just don’t get what it takes to stick in the NHL. They don’t want to work yet want all the ice time and benefits that go with it. If he wants to stay in the lineup than work hard don’t cry about it. It’s not rocket science.

  39. w.p.d says:

    Magic 8 ball says, “victory”.

  40. UKRAINIANhab says:

    Kessel acting like a 2 year old right now, smashing his stick everywhere…

  41. UKRAINIANhab says:

    Habs 2 Tb 1

    Plekanec, Desharnais

  42. Habitoba says:

    Pumped contract talks with Markov going well

  43. w.p.d says:

    I’ve questioned many of MTs decisions and actions this year but, can’t dispute the results. Give credit where it’s due I guess.

  44. smiler2729 says:

    I don’t know why but I dread the Lightning… Yeah, I know the ’04 playoffs were a million years ago and Vinny, Brad F. Richards and MStL are gone but they just don’t match up well against them, it’s always tight and a nailbiter.

    Wish we could skip them in the playoffs.

    Jack Edwards is a clam.
    Gary Bettman is a bobblehead.
    The “CH” in CHOKE stands for Toronto Maple Leafs.

  45. I’m expecting a horrible game so any goals we do score will be a bonus.

    Habs 8
    TB 1

    Shane Oliver
    Twitter @Sholi2000
    Custom Sports Figures
    Congrats Carey Price and PK Subban, Montreal’s Gold Medal Members!

  46. UKRAINIANhab says:

    Hi guys, should be another fun live blog. Hopefully, we can Galchenyuk and Eller going before playoffs. Galchenyuk is a player who is in a bit of a mini slump lately.

  47. CJ says:

    Good evening folks.

    Just changed the batteries inside the remote. I figure there will be lots of flipping around the dial tonight. I’ll be watching the Habs as the primary, but will try and keep my eye on other key match ups. Not going to lie, I’m in favor of any scenario that knocks Ottawa out. I want them as low as possible – winning the draft lottery would be ideal – as their first round pick belongs to the Ducks. I’d like the Leafs to finish ninth. I don’t want to see them rewarded with a great pick.

    I’m hoping for a tight game tonight with the Habs winning 2-0. I don’t want to provide Tampa with any opportunity to get physical, especially considering how undermanned we are right now. Yes, I’m the guy who has beaten that horse to death. Admittedly we are getting the wins with our lineup, so I need to remain in check, but I can’t help but think over a seven game series we would benefit from some sandpaper. As they say, it’s better to give than receive. I’d love to see a healthy Prust and Weise helping that fourth line. I’d love to see Tinordi drive Malone through the wall and pound Crombeen into next week. Deep breath…..

    So, in customary fashion, I’ll now fall into line and get behind the team, 100%, and say Go a Habs Go! It’s not my lineup, but it’s the results that matter. Cheers, CJ

  48. Danno says:

    Does anybody know how it will work for 1st round playoff tickets?


    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
    Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

  49. Habcouver says:

    Joe Colborne interview: he appeared quite content being a Flame, not a Laff.

    We Are (Not) All Canucks.
    Proudly Canadian but passionately Canadien!

  50. ABHabsfan says:

    Maybe the Habs can get a guy like Palat with their 7th rounder we acquired in the Youppi deal this morning 😉

  51. MikeHabs says:

    The latest Habs prospect update is out from Mitch Brown, it includes video:

  52. ABHabsfan says:

    Are we getting this party started?

  53. theox_8 says:

    With 2 less games to boot, also not having the luxury of always playing on the top unit pp with pretty skilled players like Eberle, Hall, Perron. I also admit I thought Chucky would break out this year and notch at least 45 points , but he is still very young. He shows great flashes and will bury those chances soon, I would be a fool to give up on such a great young talent that we have.

  54. DDO_Habs_Fan says:

    That poll question is useless. Wait till after the season to decide.

  55. 100HABS says:

    Byrne – you were critiszing how Galchnyuk was being brought up to NHL speed too slowly. He is tied for #1 in points for all players in his draft year:

    I’d say he’s doing ok.

    • byrneoNL says:

      Yes but everyone else on the list is a D-man. Except for like Nail, and Grigorenko who have both been exceptionally bad. Galchenyuk hasn’t been exceptionally bad. Just not exceptionally good. Granted I’m comparing him to rookies who are in their first NHL season, instead of players in their second. But if anything I’d expect to see Galchenyuk excel even more, by virtue of that. I’m not panicked, just a little worried. He’s got his whole career ahead of him obviously, at 20. But will MT let him blossom?

  56. Danno says:

    If Eller catches fire, watch out.


    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
    Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

  57. UKRAINIANhab says:

    Leafs playoff chances. Lol! That video is great!

  58. PrimeTime says:

    if Habs lose tonight, who is the next coach until the next loss? if fans were the GM how many head coaches would be hired in a season? how many players would the team burn through?

    “Fans are entitled to express their opinion, but most of the comments on talk radio and on The Gazette’s Hockey Inside/Out website ranged from the mildly uninformed to the outrageously stupid” – Pat Hickey.

    º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º

  59. slyCH says:

    Looking forward to this game, I will be watching, but with the full plates I’m juggling at this moment, plates that would make, uhhhhh, what’s the best person to use here for an analogy about not drinking…ahhhhh, so what! That’s exactly what I’m doing now. Point is I hope I remember the game by mid 2nd. Enjoy y’all! I’ll do my best as well.

    • Prop says:

      Hey Sly! I’m going to be heading back to Florida this August, hopefully I’ll be spending a couple of days in Key West again.


      • slyCH says:

        Haven’t been regular on the site for awhile PROP. I went months without a peek, weeks without a sneak, days with several tweets…until lately. Now your response jeers within yet I’m in a state thinking PROPWASH…did you change the handle? Did anger force the hand by minions? It happened to me so don’t feel bad.

        I really work hard, especially these days. I’d be quite enthused to host a Hab fan on my island and treat it like a mini summit… We are a strong hockey hold here in Key West. No Leafs in sight.

        Losing steam…

        • Prop says:

          Yeah man its Propwash, I was just too lazy to type it every time I had to log in. Hopefully if all goes well and we can find a spot to park my parents RV on the island, we could get together for a few drinks and chat about the Habs and how they won the cup this year!


          • slyCH says:

            Cool as hell, Yeah. I’m gonna put feelers out for a deal at the parks…of some sorts, I’ve been here long enough I have enough friends that can steer me wright… (right?) LOL.
            I have no doubt.
            I would not be this stupid to put my e-mail out or phone number on this site but…I work at 111 Duval. st. Key West florida. 33040. Send me a letter with an email add and I will get in touch ASAP.

  60. byrneoNL says:

    When I see everything that Tampa’s rookies are doing…what Colorado’s rookies are doing… Minnesota’s rookies. Everyone’s rookies, really.. it makes me concerned about how the Habs are developing Galchenyuk. I mean sure, you can say he’s doing better than Nail Stinkupov, but I would still call this year a bust for Galchenyuk. Should we have made him 3rd line C, and just lived with the ups and downs? Was a full year at wing (and by full year I mean 10-12 mins a game) really the best choice? I think we basically wasted a year of this kid’s development. What’s more, I think he’s gone backwards and not forward. What do you guys think?

    • Commandant says:

      I think you should look at what Ryan Johansen did at 19 years old and compare it to what Galchenyuk has done this year.

      Patience. The kid is great and its just a matter of time til he breaks out.

      Go Habs Go!

      • byrneoNL says:

        Johansen is a great example, for sure. His game has really developed over the past 2 seasons. But can Galchenyuk break out, if he’s not afforded the chance? Will MT’s “no mistakes or you ride the pine forever” system of development even allow Galchenyuk to build any progress? I haven’t looked up the stats, but I’m willing to be Johansen’s ice time is /was 50% higher than Galchenyuk, and while he stunk in his first year, that’s the price of development. Galchenyuk isn’t even being given the chance to stink-learn.

        • Commandant says:

          I think Galchenyuk is learning and developping.

          Remember this is a kid who played 4 games in his draft year because of a knee injury.

          Its also a kid who played half a season in the OHL and half a season in the NHL last year.

          Even then he is still ahead of every other player in his draft class in terms of points, and is nearly double the points per game of a guy like Johanssen at the same age.

          Is he playing on the wing? Yes, but Tyler Seguin played on the wing for 3 years before being moved to centre this year. Other stars like Stamkos, Giroux and others have spent various amounts of time on the wing in their early career.

          Go Habs Go!

        • Commandant says:

          Also Galchenyuk is averaging 14:39 per game this season… not 10-12 minutes. Its only slightly more than 1:00 of difference from what johansen averaged in his second year.

          Go Habs Go!

          • byrneoNL says:

            Well hopefully he has a good game tonight and is given the chance to shine. Maybe I’m just over reacting /shrug. Go Habs!

    • ffenliv says:

      Hard to judge this year being a ‘bust’ for Alex. If he doesn’t improve? Ya, then the lessons they were trying to teach him this year were wasted.

      If he’s better next year, and then the year after? That’s all we can ask.

      Galchenuk was never going to be Mackinnon.

    • slyCH says:

      The greener grass one side one year can turn poison ivy the next. Everything is cyclical. Especially in sport. Gal’s a kid with the best up swing. Patience is… a golden calf?

    • WVHabsfan says:

      Agreed, ByrneoNL. I shudder as what has become of Galchenyuk.

    • joewindsor habfan says:

      byrne, I agree Galchenyuk will burn yet another year trying to figure out what he’s best suited for next season. Centre or winger!?! He should’ve been thrown in the frying pan this year make mistakes and learn from them.

      • slyCH says:

        He’s been centered over-easy.

      • byrneoNL says:

        Joe: Yeah I mean I’m no coach or whatever, just a fan so not saying I know anything. I just think we needed to make the decision to play him at C, and kind of shield him from other teams #1 lines, but get him out there playing C, being accountable, learning the hard lessons, adapting to the requirements. I guess next year will be his “learning to play Centre in the NHL” year, and that’ fine, he’ll be 20-21 then. Lots of time. I guess Im just not seeing any real strides from last year. But again, I’m no coach/scout pro etc.

  61. Commandant says:

    In honour of April Fools, the top 10 classic hockey pranks

    Go Habs Go!

  62. Mike D says:

    Saw this Tim Bozon story linked on MSN.

    Strangely, it doesn’t mention anything about the Canadiens organization assisting with the medical bills. Maybe it was done privately/secretely, or maybe they didn’t help at all. Pretty sad if it’s the latter. Is there anything in the CBA that would prevent a pro team helping one of their draftees with something like medical expenses?

    – Honestly yours
    Twitter: @de_benny

  63. 24 Cups says:

    Tonight’s game will be Ben Bishop’s third game in four nights.

  64. Timo says:

    The leafs do or die game is not televised nationwide? Outrage!

    • habsfan0 says:

      As a Habs fan, I will be immensely disappointed if the Leafs failed to make the playoffs this year depriving me of the opportunity to see them repeat or exceed their record established last season for worst 3rd period Game 7 collapse in Stanley Cup history.

    • Strummer says:

      They play Calgary so at least it will be shown there.
      “It’s just an opinion- I could be wrong”

  65. 24 Cups says:

    The Canadiens have won six of the last nine meetings against Tampa but have lost two of three this season. The last six games between them have been decided by one goal and nine of the last eleven. The Habs have won their last three games in Tampa and four of their last six while visiting the Lightning. The Habs also have rested the past two days and then have another two days off before they play Ottawa on Friday. So whatever happens, I don’t think being on the road will factor into the final result.

    • bwoar says:

      Definitely. Him and Killorn have been sleepers for me all year. So long as they don’t forget about Stamkos!

    • Marc10 says:

      Dug this guy up when Briere faltered early in the season in my pool. Searched forwards with a great +/- and he came up. Awesome season. Claimed DD post November when a rival pooler dumped him and the rest is history. Those sleeper guys make all the difference when your stars falter or get injured.

      Ondřej Palát, Valtteri Filppula give the Bolts underrated secondary scoring. Spend all your time covering Stamkos (and as well you should), and they’ll hurt you. It’s going to be a great series (assuming that’s the match up…)

      • 24 Cups says:

        Marc – It’s pretty even Steven on many fronts.

        Home ice isn’t a big deal for me. I think it will come down to a classic goalie match-up. Getting Gorges back in the line-up would also mean a bit less stress on guys like Murray and Bouillon which should aid Carey Price.

        • Marc10 says:

          It is pretty even up front; I agree. With the Vanek super-line, it’s a different ballgame for the Habs. They might actually score 5 on 5 and be that much more dangerous down low on the powerplay.

          And there’s always the Danny B factor in the playoffs. He’s a point per game guy when it matters, and that could tip the balance in our favor.

          Of course the Lightning have one of the top three forwards/players in the league… You can’t discount that.

          Yep… It’s going to be interesting. Glad Gorges will be back. He’s been solid in the playoffs in years past.

  66. Habcouver says:

    The schedule couldn’t have planned a better match-up today.
    If the Habs are able to shut down Stamkos tonight, hello playoffs officially.

    We Are (Not) All Canucks.
    Proudly Canadian but passionately Canadien!

    • Marc10 says:

      I like the fact that thousands of Habs fans will be able to buy tickets the minute the Bolts go on sale for the playoffs. Home ice in two buildings.

  67. Cal says:

    Book of Hab
    Chapter 14

    And thus the Ste-Flanelle ventured back and forth in the
    Land of Keys. Having slain the Panther they sought a new foe;
    One they could approach on even terms- warriors that called upon lightning.
    And the multitudes gathered there were amazed by the power and fury of both factions.
    The Bishop saved souls yet the Price was too steep.
    So sayeth the Book of Hab.

    A last look at April Fools:

  68. habfan100 says:

    Does anyone know where I can stream the game tonight? I tried Habs online streaming but they haven’t posted a link up yet.

    Also, what do you guys think Eller will get? Qualifying offer of $1.5M for 1 Year? I got the 1.5M from capgeek.

    • Habilis says:

      That site is really reliable. You will have to try a few links to see which one is best for you, but there’s always at least a couple that are good quality.

      It’s free but has ads. Having adblocker helps.

      • Peter Young says:

        Or go to Wiziwig. Google it. It will list several sites streaming the game. Just find the live sports tab, then the ice hockey tab, both at the top of the page. I like the Nutjob site; it’s fairly reliable and sometimes my computer stream is as good as digital tv. But only sometimes.

  69. frontenac1 says:

    Ah yes,finally! New thread. Like new underwear amigos. Let’s get this show on the road.

  70. Lagerhab says:

    Wouldn’t it be nice if Eller somehow turned into a good top six winger? Would solve a lot of problems.

    • Marc10 says:

      You bet. A skilled winger with size and speed who can slot in for the face-off when the center gets tossed. Yup. That would solve a lot of problems.

      You’d think learning how to play wing would be a walk in the park for a center (not so much the other way around…)

  71. Danno says:


    Hey Dipsy! Bravo!


    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
    Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

  72. DipsyDoodler says:


    Moving. Forward.

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