Game 10: Markov wins it for Habs in marathon shootout

0markiewinner2.gifCanadiens hero Andrei Markov celebrates his game-winning, shootout goal tonight vs. Pittsburgh.
Jason Cohn, Reuters

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Defenceman Andrei Markov scored on the Canadiens’ eighth shootout attempt, Habs goaltender Carey Price stopping all eight Pittsburgh attempts, to lift the Canadiens to a 4-3 victory over the Penguins at Mellon Arena tonight. The victory runs Montreal’s winning streak to four games and completes a perfect back-to-back weekend, having beaten the Carolina Hurricanes 7-4 Friday night in Raleigh, N.C.

It was Markov’s second goal of the game, having scored a power-play marker in the first period, the winner a backhand that eluded Pittsburgh goalie Dany Sabourin.

It was the only one of 16 shootout tries to beat either goalie.

Montreal outshot Pittsburgh 28-23, 3-1 in the overtime period.

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Markov is congratulated by teammate Alex Kovalev after running the Canadiens’ winning streak to four games.
Jason Cohn, Reuters

The Canadiens had every chance to put this one away in regulation time, leading 3-0 just 49 seconds into the second period.

But the Penguins clawed back, as the Hurricanes had done Friday night, and finally tied the game with 1:52 left in the third period.

With Sabourin pulled in favour of a sixth attacker against the Canadiens’ three skaters, Steve Bégin sitting out a slashing penalty, Ryan Whitney whipped a wrist shot through the pads of Price at 18:08 of the third period to pull the home team into a 3-3 tie and force overtime.

Petr Sykora, on the power play, and Sidney Crosby scored second-period goals five minutes apart to draw the Penguins close.

The Canadiens had leaped out in front on goals by Mathieu Dandenault, Markov, on the power play, and Michael Ryder.

The Canadiens were seven seconds from killing a penalty for too many men on the ice when Bégin took his minor. Tom Kostopoulos, serving the first penalty, was out of the box but the Penguins were still on the power play when Whitney’s shot found the five-hole, sending the game into extra time.

Montreal had a good opportunity to win it in overtime, enjoying a power play of their own, but couldn’t solve Sabourin. And Christopher Higgins had a golden opportunity with time running out, but broke his stick on a one-timer.

Finally, it was left to Markov to win it for Montreal on the Habs’ eighth shot. At the other end of the ice, Price was as flawless as he was for Team Canada in a memorable shootout at the world junior championship last year, leading his country to the gold medal while winning the most valuable player award.

SHOOTOUT ORDER:

Canadiens: Kovalev, Koivu, Plekanec, Streit, Higgins, Kostitsyn, Ryder, Markov (goal).
Penguins: Christensen, Sykora, Crosby, Ruutu, Malkin, Gonchar, Whitney, Recchi.

Montreal returns home now for a four-game Bell Centre homestand, with games against Atlanta on Tuesday, Philadelphia on Thursday, Toronto on Saturday and Buffalo on Monday, Nov. 5.

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Markov scores his first-period goal on Penguins goalie Marc-André Fleury.
Jason Cohn, Reuters

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Kovalev sails over Penguins’ Evgeni Malkin.
Jason Cohn, Reuters

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Canadiens defenceman Josh Gorges (right) congratulates Mathieu Dandenault on the latter’s first-period goal.
Jason Cohn, Reuters

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Canadiens defenceman Mike Komisarek splatters Pittsburgh’s Maxime Talbot against the boards.
Jason Cohn, Reuters

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Montreal’s Michael Ryder rifles one past Fleury, who would be yanked after the Canadiens’ third goal.
Jason Cohn, Reuters

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Pittsburgh’s Sidney Crosby and Kovalev mix it up after Kovalev hammered Malkin into the boards. Kovalev drew an extra two minutes in penalties.
Jason Cohn, Reuters

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Markov takes control of the puck.
Gregory Shamus, NHLI via Getty Images

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Pittsburgh’s Adam Hall and Canadiens’ Tomas Plekanec at close quarters.
Gregory Shamus, NHLI via Getty Images

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Crosby skates in on Canadiens defenceman Francis Bouillon.
Gregory Shamus, NHLI via Getty Images

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Canadiens captain Saku Koivu and the Habs bench celebrate the first-period goal of Markov (right).

Gregory Shamus, NHLI via Getty Images


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