Rabid Habs

Canadiens vs. Lightning: Game #4

Habs' Max Pacioretty

“I like the effort and determination of our group. I expect another good performance tonight.” – Michel Therrien

The Montreal Canadiens would be trying to take the series back to Montreal and look for their first win of the second round against the Tampa Bay Lightning at the Amalie Arena. What looked like a possible overtime shift for the Canadiens turned out to be a two to one loss with 1.1 seconds left of the third period, thanks to Tyler Johnson. This led to Tampa goaltender Ben Bishop being the first netminder to win eight straight games against the troops in a single season since Tim Thomas in 2008-09. While the Habs outshot the Lightning 31 to 19 overall (which doesn’t seem like a bad game for Montreal), the only hope for a possible win came from Brendan Gallagher‘s third period goal. While Tampa is sitting pretty on a three game win streak and will be looking for number four tonight, the Canadiens only have one shot to make a possible comeback in the series and that’s something they can’t afford to screw up. The pro about tonight’s game is that there’s less time for the Habs to think about Wednesday’s loss, but the troops also have to remember to play for the full 60 minutes, put as many pucks on net, and fight to play at the Bell Centre for Game 5. The Canadiens must become the fifth team in NHL history to accomplish coming back from being down three to nothing (the first to do so since the Los Angeles Kings in 2014). It’s do or die.

Two minutes and 44 seconds in, Andrei Markov gave the Canadiens a much needed goal early in the period (assisted by P.K. Subban and Max Pacioretty). The Lightning got a chance to bring the game to a tie on a power play with 12 minutes left from an Andrei Markov cross checking penalty, but Max Pacioretty took advantage of the puck and put a perfect short-handed goal past Ben Bishop at 11 minutes and 17 seconds (assisted by Torrey Mitchell) while the Habs effectively killed off Tampa’s power play. Throughout the period, the Canadiens were able to keep consistency with puck possession and were able to nine shots on goal overall before the period came to a close.

A David Desharnais shot off the glove of Ben Bishop gave the Canadiens a three point lead just five minutes and eight seconds into the second period (assisted by Dale Weise and Alex Galchenyuk). Ben Bishop ended up leaving the ice right after due to letting three goals in throughout the first and second period, putting Andrei Vasilevskiy between the pipes instead. The Habs got the chance to really shake things up on their first power play of the night near the midway mark thanks to a hi-sticking penalty on Ryan Callahan and with 22 seconds left of the power play, Jeff Petry (assisted by Alex Galchenyuk and P.K. Subban) gave the Canadiens their fourth goal of the night. This was then followed by a Brendan Gallagher goal just 15 seconds after Petry’s (assisted by Max Pacioretty and Tomas Plekanec). With Tampa grabbing a power play at eight minutes and 25 seconds, Nikita Kucherov gave the Lightning their first goal of the night at seven minutes and 34 seconds (assisted by Ondrej Palat and Anton Stralman). However, Carey Price was able to hold off Tampa from generating more goals and the Canadiens left the second period with a six to one lead.

Ondrej Palat (assisted by Tyler Johnson and Steven Stamkos) opened up the third period with a goal just 17 seconds in. However, the Canadiens were able to stay six points ahead thanks to Brandon Prust‘s first playoff goal (assisted by Lars Eller and P.A. Parenteau) with just 15 minutes left. With Andrej Sustr’s slashing penalty, Montreal had another chance to take advantage on the power play, but was killed off successfully by the Lightning. Nevertheless, the Habs were able to end the final period with shots on goal overall, beating Tampa six to two & getting another chance at taking back Round Two of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

The Montreal Canadiens face the Tampa Bay Lightning at the Bell Centre on Saturday at 7:00pm.

(Purchase your Canadiens tickets here. | Achetez vos billets des Canadiens ici.)

Follow Jessica-Lyn on Twitter: @EarlxGreat.