Game 3 (audio): Habs rally past Flyers

Canadiens’ Guillaume Latendresse pings one off the helmet of Flyers’ Joffrey Lupul at the final siren tonight.
Len Redkoles, NHLI via Getty Images 

POSTGAME AUDIO:   Price   Komisarek   Hamrlik

PHILADELPHIA – The Canadiens lost four straight games last season just once. Unfortunately, they came in the Eastern Conference semifinal against the Flyers, who bounced the Habs out of the playoffs.

Revenge, even early in the year, is sweet. The Habs’ losing streak is over now, Montreal beating Philadelphia tonight 5-3 at the Wachovia Center in a rugged, at times dirty game that surely sets the table for the season series between the two clubs.

The Canadiens earned five of a possible six points in their three-game, season-opening road swing. They returned home immediately after the game, will have Tuesday off then face the Boston Bruins at the Bell Centre on Wednesday, their home-opener.

Centreman Robert Lang scored tonight’s eventual winner, banging a short shot past Flyers goalie Martin Biron after some industrious work by eye-popping linemate Sergei Kostitsyn at 13:40 of the third period.

Defenceman Mike Komisarek bagged his first goal of the season at 2:02 of the third, his long shot tipped past Flyers goalie Martin Biron by Philadelphia defender Scottie Upshall to put Montreal up 3-2.

Simon Gagné of the Flyers made it 4-3 with 5:16 to play on the power-play, but Steve Bégin iced the Canadiens win with an empty-netter with 35 seconds left on the clock.

The Flyers outshot their visitors 32-27. The game featured 46 minutes in penalties, 26 to the Canadiens; Guillaume Latendresse, at the final siren, and Maxim Lapierre dropped their gloves to earn fighting majors.

Unexpected Habs sniper Roman Hamrlik, evidently unaware that he’s a defenceman, scored his second goal of the season from very close range, pinching in to tip home a lovely pass from Alex Kovalev at 1:18 of the third to pull the Canadiens into a 2-2 tie.

Andrei Kostitsyn had showed his physical and sharpshooting sides in a single shift with the ice still wet in the second period to open the scoring.

First he belted the Flyers captain Mike Richards to the ice at the Philadelphia blue line, then picked up a feed from Andrei Markov and snapped a hard shot past Biron at 54 seconds for his first goal of the season.

The lead lasted less than two minutes, Jeff Carter getting it back on a long shot past Habs goalie Carey Price at 2:46. And Richards followed that up with a power-play blast from a stride inside the blue line at 4:15, nicely set up by Daniel Brièr, to give the Flyers their one and only lead of the night.

You’ll not see a more wonderful save than Price made midway through the second, a Flyers’ wraparound attempt hitting the skate of Habs’ Tomas Plekanec and bouncing netward. But Price, sprawling on his back, gloved the puck and smothered it between his legs, replays clearly showing the save.


  1. 24 Cups says:

    Saku & Hoegarden – I feel we have to cut TTB some slack. He’s an honest journeyman who is perfectly suited to play on the 4th line and be a sub when the team has a full roster. Right now, he’s being asked to perform a role that he’s not totally suited for due to our injury situation. Nothing more, nothing less.

    Going for the Brass Ring – 25 Cups in 100 Years

  2. cautiousoptimist says:

    Hey man, when no one is whining about a slowish Lats or a weak Price glove hand, and on those rare days when the boo-birds take a day off from their moaning about coaching or Brisebois or Begin taking too many penalties, we need to just enjoy it while we can! For fact sakes, this is something to savour!

    1. – not a hockey site, but still kinda neat
    2. Josh Gorges on Montreal’s attack: “They’re comin’, they’re comin’ and they keep comin’. Just line after line, wave after wave…”

  3. Hoegarden says:

    TTB is a fav or mine. He gets full marks for being at the right place at the right time; in front of the net claiming a spot. It’s just that cashing in is not as easy as others. He’s the hardest worker on the team as far as I’m concerned.

  4. Dan29 says:

    Yes. That’s alright tho’. Would rather have ten 20 goal scorers than 2-3 40 goal scorers.


  5. doug says:

    Insert Penguins!!! total oversight – was working from memory. Now who to remove? I will have to go with Canes.

  6. twocents says:

    Little Kost. is proving to be the most complete forward on the team. Skating, passing, hitting, play making, controlling tempo, strong defensive coverage, great vision, hustle, fore check, back check, constantly aware, consistent, digging in the corners, awesome puck control, great attitude and energy, team oriented, no selfishness or imposing ego. It’s just so satisfying as a fan to watch this kid develop. You could see all of this there last year but, he is displaying his strengths so regularly so far this year.

    Personally, I can’t see a single hole in his game. He’ll even drive the net.

  7. Connecticut Man1 says:

    When I was there for the playoffs last season I cheered the team but did hold back a bit because Philly fans are rough. Maybe it was because I was particularly friendly with the people sitting near me, or that I wasn’t so loud about it, might even have been because I had my kids with me… I managed to get out of there with handshakes from the Philly fans sitting around us BUT the Hab fan screaming like a lunatic got doused with beer and other things tossed at him in the next section over. It was one thing cheering your own team but booing the other team in their own house? Not too bright in Philly.

  8. HabsFanInTampa says:

    That’s what I thought, Thanks.

  9. projectpete19 says:

    i was watching the same feed, this is the best evidence in the argument that the NHL NEEDS TO GET A NATIONAL NETWORK to cover games in the US. it was so bad i almost didnt want to watch anymore, and it happens with all local stations that are on NHL Center ice.

    this is where i will give versus credit, they dont show favouritism and actually to things to educate viewers

  10. Shiloh says:

    Game was an Ok performance and a solid 2-points to get. AK 46 is a stud. Kovy is still a magician. Speaking of magicians, Latendresse can make himself disappear! He did nothing all night except fight at the end – which was great, by the way.

    Hammer and Lang are playing well and Begin looked a little better. I agree that Komisarek is off a step.

    Go Habs…

  11. Number31 says:

    Wow, that’s actually the complete opposite of RDS’ comments. They were saying how Price is staying tall more and it showed on that mid-air slap in the first that hit him right in the CH. Besides, he’s so big, even when he’s down he covers so much net.

    Biron’s current GAA is 6.35 which is interestingly close to when he first started playing in the NHL about 10 years ago.

    Price’s GAA is now at 1.92 which is amazing for a 21 year old in his first full year as a starter…

    Both played 2 games this season, and Price already face 68 shots. He usually lets in 2-3 goals a game normally. Wonder what they thought about Biron letting in 4 out 10 in the last game… Or did he not have any chance on those either. Yay for RDS!

  12. Number31 says:

    I’d say a bit wrong on that one… While the team was asleep for two periods, and outshot, he really held the fort there. Of course he won’t brag about it, the kid is way too modest. (But that’s a good thing… Since bragging will only bite you in the end). His puckhandling is top-notch, just they got anticipated a lot this time, as did Biron’s on the other end a few times. That one gaff though, he saved and corrected. According to RDS, that’s the sign of a great netminder. We got a sweet pair of goalies here.

    The NHL replay highlights don’t even show that wonderful glove save of his. How lame… It was the Play of the Day tonight on CTV Sports, though.

  13. bigjames says:

    i thought the same. he got the better of kovy a few times there!

  14. Number31 says:

    Joey Mac can’t be pulled ’cause DP can’t play… I don’t know why they have him sitting on the bench if he’s got problems from his surgery. (Or so they say). Should stick him on IR and call up Danis.

  15. Number31 says:

    Ya! I’ve become a fan of his. Very impressed with his play. And it takes a lot to impress me when you play for the Flyers 😉
    the notwithstanding clause – The general consensus of an ordinary Habs fan in Montreal

  16. Habs fan in SF says:

    i agree Komisarek looked a little shaky at times, but he’s komi and i’m not too concerned. i think he might have been a little frazzled after cote’s big hit on him, which by the way was the first time in a long time i’ve actually seen komi get nailed pretty good. i’m sure Laraque was watching the game and drooling … so stoked for our next game against philly when big georges is in the lineup. pay back for all those hits – especially the one at the end of the game.

  17. MikeMcLaren says:

    Agreed. I stand up and applaud when the team scores, but I don’t shoot my mouth off and stay pretty reserved.

    It’s kind of like dealing with bears. They’re not all the same. Some you have to stand up and yell at and they run away; others will eat you alive if you don’t play dead.

    History generally shows that Philadelphia sports fans are the most classless/violent bunch around, but if you keep a relatively low profile you’re usually fine.


  18. G-Man says:

    12 goals for vs. 5 against in 3 games on the road? Oh, yeah, Habs have got to be doing something, anything, wrong. Too bad I can’t think what it is. 🙂
    That AK46 goal was sweet.

    2008/09 is the season of the Habs

  19. Hoegarden says:

    If Tom had hands, he’d have 4 goals by now.

  20. TC says:

    It’s only three games but it’s hard to not get excited about the potential of this team.

    Random Thoughts on last night’s game at the Hockey News Canadiens Blog.

    Habs Win First Battle in Philly War


  21. krob1000 says:

    For some reason he actually played less than everyone on the team last night except Dandenault

  22. twocents says:

    Josh has certainly picked up where he left off. It’s great to see. He style is so steady and not flashy, which leads to underrating. A steal? When you factor in Max Pac it’s grand larceny and likely Gainey’s best trade yet.

  23. Hoegarden says:

    Well said T.C.,
    one player who does not get much mention in the press is Josh Gorges. This guy is so underrated. What a steal he was.

  24. Habs fan in SF says:

    anyone else notice that dandy is always chewing on something? is he chewing on gum, chewing tobacco, his mouth guard?

  25. RetroMikey says:

    Robert, I set your blog as one of my favourites and I can’t get to your main page.
    What’s going on?
    “We will win the Cup only with Carey Price in the nets”

  26. Habsman says:

    I am a native of Philly, but life long Habs fan. Was able to go to the game last night…three rows behind the Habs bench. Exciting game, with a lot of intensity. Surprsied by the number of Habs jerseys in attendance! It was refreshing to see. Even a brief Go Habs Go cheer in the crowd. Flyers fans are the worst though. My wife was cheering for the Habs and a lug head in front of us turned around and said “Bit*H, go home” I guess assuming we were from Canada. She stood her ground and said “you think I am afraid of you?” and then he and some of his ever so smart friends started to physically threaten us. What a class act the fans in Philly are.

  27. Robert L says:

    New URL. Sorry for the inconvenience. I did some site tinkering on the weekend in order to rid myself of 50 spam mails per day.

  28. HabsFanInTampa says:

    You read my mind with the Comcast feed. I used to like Bill Clement way back in the days of ESPN. But, he showed his bias last night. I too, was laughing at the graphic that showed 23 Stanleys instead of 24. What bothers me is the fact that this has happened before several times with the media “stat checkers”. I don’t know why, and maybe someone can tell me. But, it seems that there’s one Stanley Cup that the “fact finders” don’t count. The announcers yesterday stated that the Canadiens organization is older than the NHL. Is this the reason that the media says it’s 23 cups? They must not count the one we won before the NHL was the NHL. Any opinions on this?

  29. Connecticut Man1 says:

    Is anyone starting to think that with the way the lineup is made up the opposition is going to have to key on so many players on so many different lines that we are going to end up with a tonne of players that have around 15 to twenty goals and not that many more than last year will get more than the 20 or 30 they had?

  30. projectpete19 says:

    its because one our first cup in 1916 was technically won before the NHL was the NHL

  31. projectpete19 says:

    price totally set up komi on that hit when he stopped the puck behind the net, it was equal to a suicide pass

  32. Habs fan in SF says:

    i watched the comcast feed s well (out here in SF) and i too noticed the 23 cups BS. i also noticed them praising price, but also taking jabs at him wherever possible … i think they used the term “train wreck” in last year’s series with philly … also mentioning his weak glove hand, but praising biron whenever possible. i’ve notice the majority of all the US announcers are biased and the shocking thing is most of these announcers are canadian. my only conclusion here is that they have to do this in order to keep the average US hockey fan’s attention (my apologies to american hockey fans), and most of them probably hate the habs. but geez, the flyers announcers lost some hockey cred with me if they don’t know how many cups the habs won.

  33. Les-Habitants says:

    Yah, Komi will be ok. We’ve all seen what he can do, and I have no doubt that he’ll be fine…and I mean, it’s not like he’s playing bad!

    I can’t wait to have Higgins back, but I think he’ll be a great fit with Saku and Tanguay…Higgins is going to get every opportunity to shoot the puck as much as he’d like.

    As for Downie and Upshall, Carbo said it right at the end of his post-game interview with RDS: there were a couple things I didn’t like in the game, but we’ll see them a couple of times in the future. Laraque and Cube will come out hitting once they finally see the ice, have no doubt.

  34. Kristopher7 says:

    wow man, did you guys hear the carey audio? he sounds happy and confident! Not all emo like during the playoffs.

    Nice to see him be confident and crack jokes… well deserved win as well.

  35. RudeMood19 says:

    Keep in mind the Habs were without Laraque, Higgins, and Bouillon, who I believe would have made a vital impact on this game. Dumbasses like Riley Cote wouldn’t dare hit our stars, Georges who beat destroy him.

  36. TC says:

    Sadly sometimes, especially for these U.S. stations you get nights like tonight.

    Flyers game broadcast on Comcast + both owned by Ed Snider = biased announcers.

    I enjoy listening to stuff like tonight, especially after the Habs third period. You could almost hear the shock, the amazement, and the fact that they couldn’t explain it because that would mean that they’d have to tell the truth.


  37. twocents says:

    I meant to mention earlier, that kid Sbisa looked really good. He looked way better than the kid the loafs played Saturday, Schenn.

  38. Ali says:

    interesting that you have the Sens AND penguins missing the playoffs. fingers crossed! I’d probably have them in and the Devils and Canes out.

  39. sam says:

    as much as i’m a Lats basher, i’d rather he keep his Koivu line job (for some reason, his work has paid off more on that line up to now) and put Higgins with SK and Lang. those are already clicking big time; the addition of Higgins will just put even more speed and grit in there.

  40. GHG33 says:

    haha yeah I noticed that too… 23 cups… how can you get that wrong?? idiots.

    Drive For 25 Is Alive!

  41. GHG33 says:

    No didn’t see that.. however watched the highlights of the of the sabres/illes game and they left that poor MacDonald kid in the net for all 7 goals…. felt bad for the kid he was obviously having a horrible game and should have been taken out after the 5th goal at least.

    Drive For 25 Is Alive!

  42. habs R my team says:

    yes, I watched the game on Comcast, the US feed. Their announcers are so biased, it’s sickening. And they also showed the habs winning only 23 cups. They need to check their stats. Nice to rub their faces in this win, especially after last year’s exit .

  43. Harani says:

    Btw…did anyone know that Brodeur and Luongo got pulled in the third period of their games against the Rangers and Caps…Any thoughts on that…did anyone watch the game?

  44. Harani says:

    Tru…My heart skips a beat everytime he comes out of his net…It’s like I’m afraid he’s gonna make some stupid mistake trying to cover up for someone like breezer…but about his glove hand…I think it just happens…but he did stopped some really good ones too…we got a mix…it might have just been a coincidence for the goals…but still…Price is AMAZING…no doubt…..What a save! is a tagline which you we will hear many times this year….

  45. GHG33 says:

    I am more afraid of his puckhandling skills than his glove hand at this point.

    Drive For 25 Is Alive!

  46. Ton says:

    Where did Price get beat tonight? Two on the glove side (as usual) and one scramble that he should have. He did not win us the game tonight therefore lets not jump on the Price bandwagon once more. Most teams know he’s weak there and if its obvious he needs help for they will be targeting this glove side all season long.

  47. twocents says:

    I agree, I think he has been our best forward over the three games in total, along with Lang. But, he is one of my favourite players.

  48. twocents says:

    TC, I agree those guys were awful. What about this line early in the game, “those were two of the most underrated saves!'(by Biron) hmm… underrated by who? I hate listening to the American feeds but, my friend(with sattelite) doesn’t understand french so…

  49. Harani says:

    I strongly feel that Sergei Kostitsyn’s performance has been outstanding in the past games…and he deserves to be called consistent…HE understands his teammates well and shoots the puck quite often…

  50. doug says:

    My perspective on game: very evenly matched. Philly was far better than they were last year in the playoffs when we couldn’t finish and Price couldn’t stop. Adding Gagne back in along with Metropolit makes a difference, and this was without a couple of their better defenseman.

    I’m impressed by Holmgren at this point. From the cellar two years ago to a legit contender in the East. . . I think they’ve played two of the other teams that will be there at the end – Rangers and Habs – and could have won either game. Great to see us finish them off, though.

    I’m headed to Montreal this weekend and will catch the Phoenix game on Saturday which I hope will be a big win, but first things first – let’s make sure the Bruins don’t move up to contender status too quickly (and with Bergeron back and the addition of Wheeler I think they’ll be a playoff team).

    Early predictions for playoffs (in no particular order):
    1. Habs
    2. Rangers
    3. Caps
    4. Flyers
    5. Bruins
    6. Hurricanes
    7. Sabres
    8. Devils

    Most troubled franchise at year-end: TB and their salary cap and no defense. Anyone who’s watched Barry Melrose on ESPN for the last decade has to be wondering how the hell he got a head coaching job: nice guy, good guy. . . dummy.

  51. Xtrahabsfan says:

    As far as players sitting against the Bruins:Dandy’s got the wheels but not much else in tonites and the Laff’s game and Breezers looks tired.

  52. twocents says:

    Well it wasn’t pretty but, it was important. The psychological effect of winning this game on the team, and Price in particular, is huge. And what a brilliant way to open the season, 5 out of a possible 6 points on the road, Nice!

    I can’t say anyone consistently stood out in a negative or positive way tonight. The whole team seems to be unable to get a flow going but, kept plugging away and deserved the win. Lang is proving to be very nice addition and the shortcomings that he’s is known for have not really surfaced. Andrei K. certainly looked great on a few occasions and again I thought Sergei played a solid game, three in a row. Pleks was noticeably ineffective and his penalty was not good. Overall, no one was at their best but, everyone had their moments. Wednesday should be fun.

  53. Harani says:

    Today…that glove didn’t give him any problems…you would have realized that if you had watched the game…may of the saves he executed were in the glove…..

  54. mossat says:

    Hi guys just watched bits and pieces and some goals from both sides. I think the habs look good and of course they are my favorite team. Is it just me or it seems they are a little shaky at times. Maybe careless for a better word. Kovalev is good for point per game so far but that line seems to be struggling. And one last thing is I’m really scared of Price’s glove hand. Everything else about him is awsome. He’s big, he’s fast and he’s smart. But that side seems weak. Correct me if I”m wrong and I know you will. What are they going to do to help him fix that?? anyone?

  55. jimbo says:

    Higgins will play with Koivu and Tanguay,Lats will play with Lang and Sergei.With the chances Tom the bomb is getting,Lats will put a few of those in

  56. Harani says:

    I luv Price!

    1. They blocked tons for me… I gotta take em’ out to dinner….ROFL!


    1. One of a couple this year…sounds like he’s ready to hit them hard!
    2. Carbo sure told them something! : FIND A WAY TO WIN!! LESS CHIPPY…You’re gonna have to pay the PRICE…lolz…

    Hammr is panting…tired!

    1. Calls lucky breaks…
    2. Be more desperate….LOL!

  57. TC says:

    Listening to them in the broadcast booth you’d be amazed that Price is an NHL goaltender. The one guy who sits between the benches (think the Philly answer to Pierre McGuire) mentions how Price goes down too early on every shot and leaves far too much of the net exposed. Then he takes a breath and mentions that Price has a weak glove hand.

    Of course, as the third period went on, one could get the feeling that the announcers weren’t prepared, and neither where the Flyers for what the Canadiens unleashed.

    As a sidenote, they noted that Biron didn’t have any chance on any of the Habs goals. I don’t remember hearing a negative word about Biron all night.


  58. cautiousoptimist says:

    Is anyone else thinking that Lang was one heck of an addition to the team? Man he’s looked good so far.

    1. – not a hockey site, but still kinda neat
    2. Josh Gorges on Montreal’s attack: “They’re comin’, they’re comin’ and they keep comin’. Just line after line, wave after wave…”

  59. bidds55 says:

    So assuming Higgins is back next game, what does Carbo do?

    I think with 3 points last game, and a solid outing tonight, Lats has shown some good chemistry on the Captain K/Tanguay line….I say let him stay. It’s not like Lang and SK74 haven’t been lighting it up, so it’s not exactly a demotion.
    For anyone interested, there is an awesome hockey card show at Centre Pierre Charbonneau in Montreal Oct 24, 25, 26 (the weekend of the HIO summit). I have no affiliation with it, but I’ll be there, as will Carey Price, Andrei & Sergei Kostitsyn and more!

  60. GHG33 says:

    Downie won and Lats won… both in takedown fashion I think.

    Drive For 25 Is Alive!

  61. Exit716 says:

    Yes, Flyers announcers are eminently qualified to comment on goaltending.
    Geez. Was the winning goal a weak shot to the glove side that Biron flubbed like a Jr. C caliber goalie?

  62. HabsColor says:

    I totally agree with you on that of last playoff.

    These two guys together makes a supper K line; there two guy otherwise can make supper 2K lines. You know what I am saying. 🙂

  63. The M says:

    THN had Markov as the eighth best dman in the NHL and Komisarek as the 12th.

    In a the same article, they has Vesa Toskala as the 8th best goalie, so THN completely undermined themselves again as usual

  64. Drive_For_25 says:

    Saw it in playoffs last year and it wasn’t so bad.

  65. habgunner says:

    Good article, so the flyers announcers think that Price is average? Perfect! Let em’ think that, in the meantime I am very confident that Price will have a much better season/career than Biron. I really look forward to us playing them with big George in the lineup!

  66. habgunner says:

    Both were more like wrestling than anything, Lats did flip the guy down but no major punches in both fights…

  67. TC says:

    Random thoughts on tonight’s game from the Hockey News Canadiens Blog.

    Habs Win First Battle in Philly War


  68. Eric37 says:

    Who won the fights??? Missed the game for thanksgiving. (Lupul vs Lats & Lapierre vs Downie)


  69. habgunner says:

    Really like the look of the team. Having Lang man the 3rd line is such an incredible upgrade so far and Tanguay is clearly a gifted player also. Once Higgins comes back and either goes back to Saku or starts off with Lang we will have the best 3 lines that I have seen for the Habs or any team for that matter in a very long time. I really like our start to the season and am very optimistic in our chances of having the best season of the last 15 years…

  70. HabsColor says:

    Never see this: koivu-kovalev — Leadership confliction, kind of wasting resources.

  71. Dan29 says:

    Markov and Komisarek are definately one of the top 5 pairings in the NHL. For so early in the season they’re showing great timing and accuracy.


  72. G BO says:

    is that 8-0 in the regular season now vs the flyers?

    insane save by price, showing his increased speed.
    lang is still looking good out there.
    kovalev needs to be more of a presence, but still played well. he usually dominates the flyers.
    kostitsyns – lighting it up. id love to see them on the same line together…thats what drafting brothers is for right?

    im feelin that.

  73. GHG33 says:

    He looks like he is having so much fun! He is just flying out there.. really good grinder in the corners too and great vision.

    Drive For 25 Is Alive!

  74. GHG33 says:

    Lets not forget Hammer!!… 2 goals already!!

    Drive For 25 Is Alive!

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