Lightning goalie Dwayne Roloson makes a diving save during the first period on Thursday night. Phil Carpenter, The Gazette
• At a Glance: Nigel Dawes, in his Canadiens debut, and Michael Cammalleri scored in the shootout on Thursday night to give the Canadiens a 3-2 shootout win over the Tampa Bay Lightning. The Lightning scored 35 seconds into the second period, while on a 4-on-3 power play, to take a 1-0 lead. Teddy Purcelle gathered a rebound in front of Carey Price and put a shot off the inside of the post behind Price. It took the Canadiens five minutes to respond, with Andrei Kostitsyn scoring his 18th of the season when the puck found him in front of an open net with Dwayne Roloson caught out of position. Brian Gionta gave the Canadiens a 2-1 lead about four minutes into the third period with his 25th goal of the season, a shorthanded marker. Gionta blocked a pass at the Montreal blue line and broke in on Roloson and deked the Lightning goaltender before scoring on a nifty backhand shot. Simon Gagné made it 2-2 at 9:29 while the Canadiens were killing off a four-minute penalty to Benoit Pouliot when he deflected a wobbly Martin St. Louis point shot past Price, who made 35 saves on the night.
• Key Moments: With nine second left in the first period, Vincent Lecavalier was ejected from the game and given a five-minute major penalty for slashing Canadiens defenceman P.K. Subban, who was also penalized for slashing on the play. Lecavalier’s slash, however, was of the two-handed variety and caught Subban in the midsection.
• What It Means: The Canadiens close to within two points of the Lightning for fifth spot in the Eastern Conference with 85 points and a 39-25-7 record.
• What’s Next: The Canadiens play Friday night in New York against the Rangers before travelling to Minnesota to play the Wild on Sunday, a 6 p.m. start.