Blues’ Jaroslav Halak and Alex Pietrangelo defend against Canadiens’ Lars Eller Thursday night. Dilip Vishwanat,Getty Images
• At a Glance: The much anticipated matchup between former Canadien Jaroslav Halak and current No. 1 Carey Price proved anticlimactic on Thursday night, a 4-1 win by Halak’s Blues over a Canadiens team that seemed emotionally drained after a whirlwind 48 hours. Jeff Halpern gave the Canadiens a 1-0 lead with his 11th goal of the season 12:30 into the opening period. Defenceman Alexandre Picard found Halpern posted to the left of Halak and fed him a pass that Halpern only had to redirect beyond Halak. The Blues would tie the game before the period was over when David Backes scored off a faceoff at 18:59. Backes’s shot from the top of the faceoff circle dribbled under Price’s arm and across the goal line. Only 1:06 into the second period, the Blues took the lead when Andy McDonald took advantage of a turnover in the Montreal zone to beat Price for his 17th goal of the season. Another turnover late in the third period allowed Matt D’Agostini, also a former Canadien, to make it 3-1 Blues with his 14th goal of the season at 18:31. T.J. Oshie scored into an empty net to cap the scoring with 23 seconds to play. Halak made 27 saves for his 21st win of the season while Price, who has 32 wins, made 23 saves.
• What It Means: The Canadiens saw their five-game winning streak snapped, and their record falls to 37-24-7 for 81 points. They remain in sixth place in the Eastern Conference, three points behind the fifth-place Tampa Bay Lightning. The Canadiens missed a chance to close to within 2 points of the Boston Bruins, overtime losers on Thursday night, for top spot in the Northeast Division.
• What’s Next: The Canadiens play Saturday afternoon against Pittsburgh Penguins the return home to take on the Capitals on Tuesday and the Lightning next Thursday.