More hockey in Montreal
REALLY good time for the first playoff goal of Max Pacioretty's career.
Specifically, 19:17 of the third period in a 3-3 game.
Bring out the broom.
The Canadiens swept Tampa Bay out of the first round of the playoffs, but it wasn't easy.
After skating off to a 2-0 lead on goals by Daniel Brière and Lars Eller, the Canadiens surrendered a second-period fluke by Ondrej Palat before Brendan Gallagher restored the two-goal lead.
Then in a shade over two minutes during the third period, the resurgent visitors gtied it up, on goals by Vitcor Hedman and Tytler Johnson, and seized momentum.
The game looked destined for OT until Cedric Paquette tripped Michäel Bournival in the Canadiens zone with two minutes left.
Max pacioretty, quiet through the series to that point, beat Kristers Gudlevskis to win the game ... and the series.
Credit Tampa Bay.
Down 3-1, the Lightning fought their way back into the game on goals by Victow Hedman and Tyler Johnson.
Not a dry seat in the house at the Bell Centre.
Then Cederic Paquette took a terrible offensive zone penalty with a shade over two minutes left.
And off passes by P.K. Subban and Thomas Vanek, Max Pacioretty squeezed the puck past Kristers Gudlevskis to win the game.
Ondrej Palat scored a shorthanded goal off a dog's breakfast scramble in Carey Price's crease, and it could have sparked a Tampa Bay comeback.
After scoring, the Lightning went more than 10 minutes without getting another SoG.
And Brendan Gallagher converte a sweet Tomas Plekanec pass to end Anders Lindback's night in the TB net.
Kristers Gudlevskis came on and made some nice stops at the Canadiens held a 14-7 shot advantage, 29-13 on the game.
A perfect period?
Pretty darn close.
The Canadiens outshot Tampa Bay 15-6, dominated in all three zones and got goals from Daniel Brière and Lars Eller.
Is 2-0 the most dangerous lead?
It beats 0-2 when you're 0-3.
Broom at the ready
It's been 21 years since your Montreal Canadiens held a 3-0 lead in a playoff series.
On May 8, 1993 in Buffalo, the Canadiens edged the Sabres 4-3 – that was the final score of each game in the series – to sweep and move on to the Eastern Conference final.
Will Tampa Bay be swept out of the 2014 postseason?
It won't be easy.
The Lightning played their best game of the series Sunday night. And their disallowed goal will be the subject of sports bar debates for years to come.
Nor will it be easy, however, for the visitors to stay alive in the frenzied postseason atmosphere of the Bell Centre.
The Canadiens are playing superb hockey. Coach Michel Therrien is getting smart, disciplined play from four forward lines, P.K. Subban is turning into a postseason beast and Carey Price is ... Carey Price.
On the other hand, we have the Chris Lee factor.
The Canadiens have lost the last five games in which they've drawn Lee as a ref. Since 2011, they are 3-12 in with this particular zebra.
• • •
• Wasn't that Mikael Granlund goal a beauty?
• When is the NHL going to give Matt Cooke the lifetime ban he so richly deserves?