The Montreal Canadiens were utterly and thoroughly outplayed by the Ottawa Senators last night. It was a downright dominating performance by the Sens, especially the line of Kyle Turris between Bobby Ryan and Clarke MacArthur. They stormed the Habs zone all night creating chance after chance.
But somehow the Canadiens won the game 5-4 in overtime. I shouldn’t say somehow, because we all saw exactly how they won. Carey Price was phenomenal, and the Senators defense was awful.
Montreal staked a 3-0 lead in the first period even though they were already being dominated. Plekanec opened the scoring on a shorthanded breakaway, when Erik Karlsson allowed him to get behind the defense, and he beat Craig Anderson with a five hole snap shot.
Max Pacioretty made it 2-0 shortly after on the Canadiens only power play of the evening. He was left alone in the slot and made no mistake when David Desharnais fed him a nifty pass. Pacioretty one timed in over the glove of Anderson.
Desharnais would stretch the lead to 3-0 when a nice give and go, and an all too kind defense allowed him to walk right in to the crease. Desharnais showed off his hands in tight skills he usually reserves for the shootout, and beat an outstretched Anderson with just the fifth Canadiens shot of the evening.
Things went pretty quiet from a Habs perspective from there, as the Senators were far too much for the Habs to defend. The next 40 minutes of hockey were played pretty much exclusively in the Habs zone. When the second period ended, the shots were 38-17 in favor of Ottawa, with Montreal now trailing 4-3.
It would have been so much worse if not for several spectacular acrobatic saves by Price. As you can see here, Price was not getting a lot of help from his teammates in this one.
Luckily for the Habs, price held them in long enough for a few more blunders by the Sens to lead to a tie game. Plekanec was once again allowed to skate freely behind the Senators defense, as if one breakaway goal was not enough to teach them, and Brian Gionta sprung him in all alone on Anderson. Anderon made a great save on the Plekanec shot, but Ottawa defenseman Jared Cowen crashed the crease and booted the puck into the net to tie the game.
The game would remain tied into the extra frame, and P.K. Subban would play the hero and give the Habs two very undeserved points. Gionta applied pressure on Karlsson in Ottawa’s end and the defenseman made a very soft play which led to a turnover. Subban pounced on it and his shot just squeaked through the pads on Anderson.
It was probably the worst effort I have seen from the Habs in years, but beating Ottawa is fantastic, no matter how you look getting there.