Montreal Canadiens Lacklustre Season Ends With a Bang

Apr 29, 2022; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Canadiens at Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 29, 2022; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Canadiens at Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports /

The Montreal Canadiens entered the 82nd and final game of their 2021-22 season knowing it would be their last game of the year.

Not only did they know there would be no playoffs this season, but they were already locked into the 32nd and last place in the NHL standings. That is good when it comes to draft lottery odds, but it can’t be great for morale heading into the final game.

But then again, it did turn out to be the team’s most lopsided win of the season.

The Florida Panthers were the Canadiens opponent and they had locked down the President’s Trophy before this contest began. Knowing their playoff seeding, and not wanting to risk any injury, the President’s Trophy winning Panthers sat out, while their B squad suited up to take on the lowly Habs.

If anyone joked during the season the Canadiens were a minor league team, they were proven wrong last night.

The Canadiens jumped out to an early 3-0 lead scoring on their first three shots of the game.

Jordan Harris opened the scoring with the first goal of his NHL career just 1:57 into the game. Mike Hoffman increased the lead to two when he slipped behind the Panthers defence and tapped in a rebound that sat in the crease.

Just 12 seconds later, Cole Caufield cruised down the right wing with the puck and fired a laser of a wrist shot over Panthers goaltender Jonas Johansson and it was 3-0 Canadiens after their first three shots on goal.

The Canadiens increased that lead to 4-0, when Brendan Gallagher scored on a wrist shot from about 30 feet out. The right winger scores many of his goals from a lot closer to the net than that but he beat Johansson clean for a power play goal after a sweet cross-ice pass from Mathieu Perreault.

Former Canadiens defender Ben Chiarot would close the gap to 4-1 with a power play goal of his own late in the opening period.

But the Canadiens offence didn’t slow down in period two. Caufield stole the puck from a Panther in front of the Habs bench and made a sweet backhand deke to cut through their two defensemen. He then pulled the puck around the Panthers goaltender and backhanded it into the top shelf.

Mathieu Perreault finished off a nice three way passing play with Josh Anderson and Christian Dvorak to make it 6-1. Jake Evans made it 7-1 by tapping in a cross-crease pass from Rem Pitlick. Christian Dvorak knocked in a rebound that gave the Canadiens an incredible 8-1 lead heading into the third period.

Caufield scored once again in the third period, picking up a centering pass with his skates and then snapping the puck home for his first career hat trick. Midway through the period, Tyler Pitlick scored his first goal of the season off a face-off win to give the Habs a nine goal cushion. The Panthers would get one back but the final score was 10-2, by far the biggest margin of victory for the Canadiens this season.

It was also noteworthy since it was the first win of the season for Carey Price. The Canadiens goaltender battled back all season to get to play a few games. It turns out he would get to play five this season, and finished with one win.

A Winning Habit
A Winning Habit /

Want your voice heard? Join the A Winning Habit team!

Write for us!

Caufield asked to play in World Championships. light. Related Story