Home was everything. The Canadiens went on the road after winning four games in a row at home and were dropped by the Oilers 3-0 Monday night in Edmonton. It was the Oilers fourth win in a row, all of them part of a current and on-going home stand.
Former Canadien Benoit Pouliot scored what proved to be the winning goal with nineteen seconds remaining in the first period and then set up Nail Yakupov for the Oilers second goal. Taylor Hall scored into an empty net to finish off the game’s scoring. Ben Scrivens stopped 29 shots for the shutout. The Canadiens outshot Edmonton 29-19.
The three stars were Scrivens, Pouliot and Yakupov.
Adding It Up
The Graveyard – The Oilers may have put some dreadful teams on the ice over the last 14 years but at home against the Canadiens have lost five of seven games in Edmonton and given up 26 goals. Overall since Dec. 30, 2000 Edmonton is 13-4-3 against the Habs.
Untracked – For the Canadiens this was a game that had no flow. Because of early penalties, the third and fourth lines barely saw the ice until midway through the first period and they never seemed to get untracked.
Own Worst Enemies– Of the six minor penalties handed the Canadiens, only two were in the defensive zone. Three of the fouls committed in the offensive end including two by David Desharnais. While the penalty killing was excellent too many players were left cooling it on the bench while special teams went to work.
Like Old Times – The Canadiens started the season on the road going 0-for-14 on the power play. They came home and had limited success but back on the road it was back to the same sad lament. An unthreatening 0-for-4 against the Oilers. On the road they are now 0-for-18 this season and the peanut gallery grumbling is starting up again.
Magic Chucky – Add a few more superlatives to the growing list attached to the early season play of Alex Galchenyuk. Obviously nothing in the box score, but on the league event summary there were four shots on goal and another two that were blocked. Who Knew? – The erstwhile centre Galchenyuk has become a power left winger. He recorded three more hits against the Oilers and now has a team leading 22 on the season, four more than Emelin and Subban who are share second in the category.
Also Worth Mentioning ….Nothing to be said about Dustin Tokarski’s performance. Andrei Markov fell down at the Oilers line presenting a two-on-one leading to Pouliot’s game winner. The second goals was a goalmouth bang-bang play. Maybe Carey Price gets a better push across the crease on the play. But then again, maybe not. ….Brendan Gallagher had another of his games. Last year he led the NHL with 8 goaltender interference penalties. He was again in the crease when Max Pacioretty shot the puck into the net in the first period. The referee quickly disallowed it. ……Two things didn’t happen with this loss. They didn’t establish the record for most wins through the first 9 games. They will have to share it at 7 in 8 with the 1961 Canadiens. And they have no chance of sweeping another 3-game Western Canadian road trip. It’s been 17 years since they were did that. …..Also, for the record this was the Oilers’ first shutout of the Canadiens in Edmonton since March 1, 1989. Grant Fuhr was in net for that 3-0 victory.
Moving On– The Canadiens traveled south to Calgary right after the game. They’ll play the Flames Tuesday night, their second of 16 back-to-back sets of games on their season schedule. Gametime Tuesday 9.00pm EDT. Then on to Vancouver for Thursday night.