Game 17: Komisarek the unlikely hero in OT

Canadiens goaltender Carey Price makes one of his 37 saves against the Maple Leafs in Toronto on Tuesday night. Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Updated by Kevin Mio

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The Canadiens can thank Carey Price for the two points they took home with them after a 4-3 overtime win in Toronto on Tuesday night. Mike Komisarek scored the winner on a breakaway while the teams were playing 3-on-3, slipping a shot through the legs of Maple Leags goaltender Andrew Raycroft.

Price faced 40 shots, including 39 in regulation, and made 37 saves in his first start against the Maple Leafs. Meanwhile, the Canadiens took only 25 shots on Raycroft.

Montreal’s penalty killing was also key in the win, limiting Toronto to only one goal on seven oppotunities, including a lengthy 5-on-3 in the second period.

Andrei Markov opened the scoring for the Canadiens with a power-play goal in the first period. Kyle Wellwood would put the Leafs up 2-1 in the second period with a pair of goals before Andrei Kostitsyn tied it at 2-2 with less than a minute left.

Boyd Devereaux gave the Leafs a 3-2 lead halfway through the third period, but Alex Kovalev scored his ninth of the season to tie it at 3-3 with six minutes to play. Kovalev also added a pair of assists.

This was the first time the Canadiens have defeated the Leafs this season, having lost both games prior to this by one-goal margins.

Pre-game statistics to whet your appetite:



  1. Jay_in_PA says:

    7 out of 10 leafs say that the Bell motivates them the most? Is that counting only opponent arenas, or their own, too? If the latter, it could explain a lot.

  2. coutNY says:

    We need to win no excuses play 60-65 minutes balls out, nothing left in the tank type game. Obviously, the key to this team is Sudin. Hit him often and hit him hard. You can bet they’re going to come out trying to use there size advantage to create opportunity. Ryder if your going to hesitate shooting at least pound someone on the fore check. We need to get points and pressure their Dmen because other teams seem to capitaliize on their mistakes and we are one of the best take away the previous laffs games. I say no sitting back on 1 goal leads. The emotion is too high and eventually a lucky bounce can change the mometum to the opponent. Happens more often than not… Win at all cost or die trying!

    Go Habs Go

  3. Hoegarden says:

    re your post; it’s yes and yes. Carbo only wants him to fire the puck not think about anything but fire the puck.

  4. Hoegarden says:

    Read somewhere that 7 out of 10 laffs say that the Bell Centre is the one arena that motivates them the most. Surely our Habs can turn this thing around and have 9 out 10 feel the same way about the ACC. If we have a one goal lead late in the game, I cannot help but watch the ref and try and figure out who’s going to get the call. Our speed and forechecking are the only way to stay on top if we’re ahead. I was hoping young Sergei Kots would get a call being just down the road. Let’s get this monkey off our backs tonight…
    Go Habs.

  5. nightmare_49 says:

    Ian : I thought we lost you but The Belleville Blogger is back i see and just in time for our match against the lafs at the center of the universe.

  6. Bill H says:

    I just saw an article on tsn that gives Kovalev’s take on the Habs vs the Leafs.

    “Sometimes we focus too much on the rivalry and the fans,” he said. “It doesn’t matter whether it’s here or there, there’s always half Montreal and half Toronto fans and some guys go over their heads and try to look at it like it’s a final playoff game.

    “If we just play a simple game and do things right, things will fall into place. Sometimes, people try to do extra things and it just doesn’t work.”

    That is an interesting take on it by Alex. I hope he shows some leadership in the dressing room before the game and the team doesn’t get too hyped.

  7. Bill H says:

    It should be a great game tonight. Habs will be motivated. Price will be on his game. 3 – 1 Habs. Goals from Pleks, Higgins and Kostitsyn. Sorry folks. My crystal ball says Ryder will get an assist on Higgins’ goal, but will not break his slump tonight.

  8. JF says:

    Hi Ian! I wondered where you’d gone the last few days!

  9. JF says:

    We have better goal-tending than the Leafs and their defense is porous. We must use these advantages against them. If we come out skating and checking hard, we have a good chance. However, if we come out flat and let them set the tempo, chances are they’ll score the first goal and we’ll be playing catch-up hockey all night. I’ll be very disappointed if this happens because, after losing the first two games the way we did, I would expect the Habs to come out flying and be absolutely determined and focussed. If they start out like the last game against Toronto, I’ll turn the TV off!

  10. The Ian Cobb says:

    Good morning Leaf killers. this is a test post and thanks Robert L for the help with the teck. stuff!

  11. N.B. habs fan 50 yrs says:

    To be frank the leafs had both games given to them on a platter by the ref in the final seconds.We are far better team on stats than they are and we will be a big winner tonight.This will be Riders night tonight to prove himself or his time is limited here.What do you think?

  12. Geoff F says:

    It looks like Raycroft is getting the start in net tonight. I’m so pumped because i’m going to the game. Managed to get seats so i’ll be there chearing the Habs in person and i can’t wait.

    Hopefully Price stones these buggers because i’m tired of losing to these guys. We have been playing amazing and with the game we had against the Sens you have to know the Habs are on the right track! Let’s hope they can prove it tonight!!!

    GO HABS GO!!!

  13. Moey says:

    2 key points for a win tonight, Price in nets, and if the Habs bring their Ottawa game, there is no reason on God’s green earth that they shouldn’t beat the leafs. If they don’t they all need a good slap on the head and a V8!!

    I agree the leafs have a psychological advantage, and it’s because they haven’t won anything in 40 years. Beating us is the next best thing. It gives them something to boast about.

    The Habs do a lot of charity work, so if they lose, I’ll consider it as a donation to the underprivileged. (Easier for me to digest).

  14. KamiDave says:

    Leafs backchecking always seems better when they play us, not sure why that is. I hope we murder them! Can’t wait to see ’em play Boston this weekend… (I’ve never been east of Alberta)

  15. J.T. says:

    I hate it when the Habs play the leafs. If they lose, we have to deal with days and weeks of teeth-gnashing and analysis of what went wrong against them *this* time. If they win, we have only a sweaty sense of relief that our guys didn’t fold against toronto yet again. There’s been so much unpleasantness in the form of fluke goals, bad reffing and last-minute collapse in these games that I can’t even gloat anymore. I just wish those two teams would play the first eight games of the year against each other and get it over with. Every time one of these games shows up on the schedule, it’s like a recurring stomach flu…churning up the otherwise smooth progression of the season. Blech. I hope Price is our Pepto Bismal.

  16. habs03 says:

    old grover ur total right they seem to have a psychological adv, cuz on paper we should be beatin them every time. They have slow defense, and usaully their center’s are never back to help their defense, but yet they seem to bring their A game when playing us.

  17. 23 Cups says:

    Wow, you guys take things pretty seriously on this site! I guess I’m going to have to change my log-in to 24 Cups.

  18. OldGrover says:

    I’m hoping with Price in net, it’ll help – it isn’t as if they are BETTER, they just seem to have a psychological edge. Price in net switches things up – and that might be all they need.

  19. habs03 says:

    i dunno why or how but the leafs seem to have our number.

  20. John says:

    I work amongst a couple of hundred leafs fans. A workday Habs-leafs game is rare and it’ll be blaring on multiple radios. I hope the Canadiens bury Toronto. I think going with Price is a good idea, and the leafs are hurting. GO HABS GO

  21. Chuck says:

    Life didn’t start with the creation of the NHL, even though their head honchos would like you to think so. The team has won 24 Stanley Cups, and you’ll have a tough time finding someone to agree with 23 as the total.

    “Vote Saku for All-Star… or little Timmy gets it!!!”

  22. T-roy West says:

    Oldgrover, you pretty much took the words right out of my head. That desperate trade showed just how intelligent hab’s management were at the time. When you leave a goaltender in net for 8 or 9 goals your trying to stick it to someone. Think of Carbonneau benching Rivet and times that by one hundred. Your right oldgrover, the hab’s haven’t been the hab’s for awhile during those times but I’m starting to see the fire coming back – sooner than people might think. I think Mario and Patrick weren’t seeing eye to eye before that so mybe it was meant to be but all I can say is it wasn’t just Patrick – Mario played to all wrong!! Patrick should be a shoe in to have his jersey retired. Could anyone see Roy behind the bench of this team. What better person to have behind the bench of a team young and full of piss and vinegar.

  23. Chuck says:

    I think that somebody slept through 1993. 😉

    And truth be told, the laffs have only won eleven cups; the franchise, however, has won thirteen, with one each for the Toronto St. Pats and the Toronto Areans. If memory serves me correctly, it was only fairly recently that they hung banners in the arena aknowledging those wins, and most of their merchandise only lists eleven wins.

    “Vote Saku for All-Star… or little Timmy gets it!!!”

  24. P St. Pierre says:

    Guys, TSN (Toronto Sports Network) is reporting that Vesa Toskala has the flu and Andrew Raycroft will start against the Canadiens tomorrow night. I know that Raycroft just came off a shutout, but Montreal has played very well against him in the past. I believe he was pulled twice against them last season. Anyways, I’m looking forward to the game…should be insane.

  25. 23 Cups says:

    I guess it depends on how you look at it. I was only counting the Cups won by the Canadiens in the NHL as listed by the NHL Official Guide & Record book. It’s 23 Cups since the official NHL start in 1917 and it’s 24 if you count the 1915-16 Canadiens which were not part of the NHL. Either way, it sure beats 13!

  26. longbow says:

    Uh,Its 24 Stanley Cups dude.

    P.S. leafs suck.

  27. HAB-POSITIVE says:

    We better HUMILIATE those talentless, jam the net, ref in the pocket,commentator biased to the point of sickness, pack of wolves, overrated, overpriced, Bay St.Suits, hear a pin drop arena, thousand$$/seat, lowest IQ fan base….

    I always ask, why are you a leaf fan?

    they haven’t done ANYTHING to inspire a fan base.

    we have 1993 and 1986 (the most recent)
    Pittburg fans had Lemeuix and a couple cups…
    Devils can rally around Brodeur and a cup…


    nothing better than the day after, listening to them cry on the radio about their team…..

  28. RH says:

    The Habs need to crash the net more and do a better job of screening the goaltender on shots. We all know that the leafs are the worst defensive team in the league but Toskala seems to have the Habs number so far this year and, for a team that’s struggling to score, when not on the power play, that’s not good news. The leafs have Tucker and Wellwood back also, so they’re going to be buzzing more than usual. There’s no question that the Habs need this game badly, and hopefully, they come out playing desperate hockey for a full sixty minutes.

  29. moeman says:

    The leaf officially has 11 Cups, they bought 2.

    Go Habs!

    ~ have a powerful day ~

  30. kevrob says:

    Price will be great tomorrow..the curse shall be lifted.

    Go Habs Go!!!

  31. Naila Jinnah says:

    Oh, I sure hope that with Price in nets, the Leafs will “cure” Montreal.

  32. LL says:

    Interesting statistics! Seems once we’re trailing we’re down and out. Also, with Sundin topping 4 of 5 categories for Toronto’s player statistics, makes me wonder where they would ever be without this guy.

  33. OldGrover says:

    I think a lot of that statistic is more that we haven’t been trailing much… even when we have come out of the gate poorly, we tend to go into the first (and often into the second) tied or ahead.

  34. TradeRyder says:

    Great stats.

    This team has more talent, more spark, more energy… but finish… still a work in progress.

    We need to learn how to a) turn a game around and b) land a knock-out punch.


    Trade Ryder! Hope makes a good breakfast, but a bad supper!

  35. Ibleedbleublancetrouge. says:

    I agree, the finish will come in time… I hope.


  36. showey47 says:

    I do really hate when we play in toronto, officiating always seems to be against us and there is usually at least one southern ontario ref doing that game. I wonder what mlse pays for this luxury? I wonder if it ever occured to the competiton committee that maybe ontario refs should only be doing western conference games due to a conflict of interest?

  37. T-roy West says:

    First time poster – long time viewer here. Just wanted to say thank you Dave, Pat and Kevin for all your hard work on this site as well as everyone else that’s involved with it. This is by far the best hab’s site on the planet and it’s great to see hab’s fans from far and wide come together. A hello goes out to people like Jim M, Lee, Ian, Krob, Naila, Zamboni and yes even Pleks for their insight and entertaining comments. Glad to be here and I look forward to the discussions.

    Cheers, T-roy West

    P.S. First debate…Did Patrick Roy really give up on Montreal like Kevin said in today’s PuckCast or did Mario Trembly turn his back on Patrick. Debate away!!!

  38. OldGrover says:

    Take a look on my viewpoint on this in the Puckcast comment stream. My view – Patrick didn’t give up – the whole organization gave up on what it meant to be a Hab. The late nineties were a dark time. St Patrick didn’t leave the Habs – the Habs left him. Tremblay picked a fight he could never win.

  39. 23 Cups says:

    I would like to clarify my point as to why we should not retire Roy’s number. Back in 1971, A hotheaded Henri Richard called his coach Al MacNeil “the worst coach in the world”. Instead of quitting on his team the way Roy did, Richard showed he was a true Hab by going out and scoring two goals in the pivotal seventh game against Chicago which the Habs won 3 to 2. We won the Stanley Cup in part because Richard swallowed his pride and played the game of his life for his teammates and the fans. Roy quit like a baby, forcing a gun to our heads which led to the ill fated trade with Colorado. (On the other hand, I would also have to say that Patrick Roy was the main reason we won Cups in 86 & 93. There was no hope of winnings those Cups without his brilliant play) Alas, players’ numbers are retired based on pride, tradition, and class not just career stats.

  40. OldGrover says:

    The ill-fated trade was management and all management – they had lots of options other then trading him in desperation. They held all the cards – what, you think Patrick Roy wasn’t going to play if they didn’t trade him? And if he played, you think he wouldn’t play his best? You think he was really going to spend a year or two sitting? Yeah, right. They had lots of time to consider their options, figure out what was what, make a GOOD trade if they wanted or patched things up if they didn’t. Yeah, he was pissed. But management ballsed that situation up. You don’t embarrass your only legit superstar. And if you do, you don’t bull your way through it. You be a real manager / coach and you fix the situation. Sheer, unadulterated stupidity. But that’s what Habs management of the era WAS. Look at the draft picks, look at the trades – for awhile there, every guy who wore a C got traded almost immediately after. Remember those jokes? C you later? The Habs weren’t the Habs for those 5 years. They really weren’t. Like I said – Patrick didn’t leave the Habs. The Habs weren’t there to be left.

  41. 23 Cups says:

    You make some excellent points, even if they bring back memories of dark days gone by. I’m certainly willing to be open minded and rethink my position on this issue.

  42. OldGrover says:

    I think it is a bit of different perspective – just clicked on your profile – you’ve been a Habs fan a lot longer then I’ve been alive. I’m 33 – I started REALLY watching at age 11 during the 86 cup run. The 93 run was the year before I went to university. I missed the glory years – I’ve read about them, seen recordings of old games, but it isn’t the same. Roy WAS the Habs to me, I started watching as he picked the team up and carried it, as a rookie. I kept watching as he was there for the Habs (and for Team Canada) all through those years. I watched the 93 Cup run with amazement. And then I watched the Habs go to pieces and suddenly be a different team. Those “dark” years were most of my adult Habs supporting life – they maybe loom larger for me then you.

    And now, with Gainey at the helm, I see them come back and remember who they are supposed to be, which is fabulous. But I can’t really forget that they forgot who they were – that there was a time not too long ago when they really weren’t the Habs.

  43. Wops says:

    Garth Murray with the Florida Panthers.

  44. Shiloh says:

    No idea if this comment will show up but here goes….Wooo-hooooo!!! Nice to beat the Loafs. Ryder didn’t score but he is still playing about 50 times better than Guillaume the Fum. Latendresse is playing at about a Midget C level.

  45. bigjames says:

    sorry to disappoint M. Sundin…
    habs baby!

  46. Fer_hab says:

    Carey is way too much to comprehend or even try to comment on.

    Kovalev is officially reborn in the bleu blanc et rouge. Hes playing inspired (for him) hockey and hes really raising the level of Big TitTs and Pleks.

    Hoping Latts finds his game, BUT with the way the team is playin I see no reason to JOIN THE HERD BAAAAS BAAAAS ing this kid who is still finding his game. Way too young and has too much potential to be crucified at this point in his career. Lets please be patience

  47. Shiloh says:

    Let’s have him find his game playing for the Yukon Sourdoughs – or wherever. He wasn’t ready last year and he is truly brutal this year. I would say he is the most talentless player in the NHL. Every time he’s on his linemates are playing a man down. He needs to play lots of minutes somewhere – but not in the NHL. He’s too slow and lacks the ability.

  48. WindsorHab-10 says:

    Price was priceless tonight. I still don’t understand why the Habs don’t bring their A-game against the Leafs? It’s comforting to know that we can beat them with our C and even D-game. I wasn’t too impressed with Markov’s lack of discipline that could’ve easily cost us the game (4 trips to the sin bin). Komisarek rocks and getting the game winner was the icing on the cake. Thank you Habs for coming through and living in Windsor I know that Leaf fans will be in mourning tomorrow and that will make me very very happy. Let me close by saying: LEAFS SUCK.

  49. ClaytonM says:

    A picture says 1000 words

  50. lcpservices says:

    Didn’t I tell you boys that the Habs will win tonight.

    They where hungry after a disappointing loss to Ottawa on Saturday.

    Is it just me, but do you all think that the Leafs are going in the wrong direction in the standings?

    At this pace, they might not make the playoffs.



  51. InGy says:

    Nice play Komi! I love this guy!
    Seein #8 breaking away like that, I had flashes of Recchi…lol.
    good game boys!

  52. G-Man says:

    Tight game last night and it was especially frustrating.
    Being a lover of wildlife and all kinds of flora and fauna, I make this appeal to all of you out there with the same opinion. Isn’t it time those zebras were culled? Especially the particularly stupid ones with the orange bands on their right front leg? They serve no purpose other than to graze sullenly and once in a while one of them raises their leg unexpectedly and blows a whistle, much to the dismay of tricolore fans.
    The particularly blind zebra in question last night disregarded Markhov’s receiving of a stick in his face and then went on to punish the same tricolore as often as possible. Much to his chagrin, the tricolores got together and ruined the blind zebra’s plans.
    Get it together, Colin Campbell, I wouldn’t have your refs calling peewee games. Awful is too soft a term for the blatant homers you have in Toronto.

  53. nychabsfan says:

    RE:FEAR-I was having the same concers watching this game,some old bad habits still kicking around.Ryder needs to shoot more and go to the net,be gritty,this will get him out of this rut.where was Higgins?Koivu only give 150%,Pleks I really think is emerging as a leader and team star,good chemistry w/ Kovy and I like how kosty is coming along.We have the best goaltending tandem hands down.Enough w/ the trade Huet chant.Has it occured to anyone that the only reason to trade him is for a minimum consistent 50 goal man(that is his value to this team folks)while top goaltending is immeasurable who is going to give up a Lacavaliere like player especially during a playoff run?

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