Canadiens goalie Carey Price (left) accepts congratulations from teammate Cristobal Huet after Price’s impressive performance.
Mike Cassese, Reuters
Look for action photos here.
The last time the Canadiens were in Toronto this season, earlier this month, they won on an overtime breakaway goal. By not-often-scoring defenceman Mike Komisarek, for heaven’s sake.
Tonight, they went to a five-round shootout and Andrei Kostitsyn played the more likely hero, lifting the Canadiens to a 4-3 victory with the visitors’ second SO goal at a stunned Air Canada Centre.
Sign this victory in huge part to goaltender Carey Price, who made 46 saves and won his second straight game against the Canadiens’ long-time arch-rival.
The rookie netminder is now 6-2-1 this season; on the road, he’s 5-1-0.
Toronto captain Mats Sundin scored with 18 seconds left in the third period, Leafs goalie Vesa Toskala pulled for a sixth attacker, to pull the Leafs into a 3-3 tie. Sundin was the only one of five Leafs to beat Price in the shootout.
Montreal had goals by Alex Kovalev, his 11th and 12 goals of the season, both on the power play and both from his favoured faceoff circle, and Guillaume Latendresse, who added his sixth, banging one in from short range while playing on the first line with Saku Koivu and Christopher Higgins.
Kovalev scored again in the shootout, with Tomas Plekanec, Koivu and Higgins stopped by Toskala.
The Habs, who had lost two in regulation and won one in overtime in their three games against the Maple Leafs this season, improved to 13-8-3 in the Northeast Division. Toronto fell to 8-11-6, further greasing the skids for general manager John Ferguson Jr. and Paul Maurice, who are trying to lead a club that is in great turmoil.
Montreal was easily outshot 17-6 in the first period, but rebounded to hold a 15-13 edge in the second before being outgunned 15-6 in the third for the 45-25 Toronto margin. The Canadiens had a 3-1 edge in overtime.
The Canadiens will be in New Jersey on Friday to play the Devils, before returning home Saturday to entertain Radek Bonk’s Nashville Predators.