Montreal Canadiens: 24 Thoughts On Habs Loss To Lightning

Nov 7, 2023; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Canadiens goalie Sam Montembeault (35) replaces teammate goalie Jake Allen (34) during the first period of the game against the Tampa Bay Lightning at the Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports
Nov 7, 2023; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Canadiens goalie Sam Montembeault (35) replaces teammate goalie Jake Allen (34) during the first period of the game against the Tampa Bay Lightning at the Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports /
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Nov 7, 2023; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Canadiens. Mandatory Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports
Nov 7, 2023; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Canadiens. Mandatory Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports /

Second Period

Ahhh, NHL referees are something aren’t they? The Canadiens are losing by four so you know they want to give the Habs a power play. Mikhail Sergachev kinda interferes with Josh Anderson but the refs arm does not go up. Then Anderson punches Sergachev in the head so the refs call Sergachev for interference.

The Canadiens power play is clicking at 20.5%!? I would not have guessed that. The amount of frustration, anger, disappointment, embarassment involved in watching this power play and they are middle of the pack? The St. Louis Blues have a PP% of 3.7!!! That’s gotta be hard to watch.

Jake Evans has looked good tonight, well as good as anyone can while losing 4-0. He has made some smart plays to get the puck out of the defensive zone and is firing laser beam passes on the tape to teammates. Canadiens could do a lot of worse with their fourth line center.

Anderson draws another penalty, this one actually legit, as he makes a real nice play to steal the puck from a Lightning player in the offensive zone, cuts to the slot with it and gets all wrapped up by a Lightning stick that results in a power play. Great play by the winger who really needs to get a goal.

Canadiens are just making this too easy on an inexperienced goaltender. First of all, they only have 12 shots more than halfway through the game, there has been almost no traffic in front of the net and they might not have a single rebound chance all night.

Now Caufield gets cross checked in the ribs and hauled down with a hook but the Canadiens had a couple power plays in a row so there is no call. Instead the Lightning get a breakaway off the turnover and Montembeault makes a nice save on Eyssimont. Montembeault makes another great save on Brayden Point on the penalty kill and has looked pretty sharp after coming off the bench.

Arber Xhekaj takes exception to a Tanner Jeannot hit on Juraj Slafkovsky and drops the gloves to make the Lightning winger answer for the hit. That’s why it pays to have good fighters who are also good enough to play regular shifts, they are actually out there when something happens. A certain division rival recently learned it is kinda of useless to have an enforcer sitting on the bench because you can’t fight from there.

I don’t know how he did it but Brendan Gallagher dialled the clock back at least five years after looking three steps behind in the first two games of the season. He just spun Victor Hedman around in circles and made another great play at the blue line to keep the puck in and cruise into the slot to create a scoring chance. He looks twice as fast as he was on opening night.