Antti Raanta, Brendan GallagherBrandon Saad broke a 3-3 tie with 27 seconds remaining in regulation time to give the Chicago Blackhawks a 4-3 win over the Canadiens Friday night at the United Centre.
Chicago led the game 2-0 on first period goals by Michal Rozsival and Ben the Canadiens came back with goals by Brendan Gallagher, Serge Gonchar and P.K. Subban. Jonathan Toews then tied the game on a third period power play setting the stage for the game winner. Toews also had an assist in the game. Gallagher also had an assist to go with his goal. The Canadiens outshot the Blackhawks 41-36. The announced three stars at the United Center were Saad, Toews and Serge Gonchar.
Adding It Up –
Deserved Better – The Canadiens were 27 seconds away from at least taking a point out of Chicago. As bad as they were in Minnesota, the Canadiens were that good in this game. It probably was a little more wide open than either coach would like but it made for an interesting and often exciting evening.  In the end though, it winds up a loss; the Habs fifth in the last six games.
In the Beginning – The scenario is becoming all too familiar. The Canadiens left their game in the morning skate. The Hawks jumped on their early and often. Rozsival was wide open for the opening goal of the game at 2:13 and I’m sure many fans were preparing for an early burial. But Carey Price was on top of his game and he got the help from his goal posts twice in the period.   In the second period he was brilliant as the Habs slowly got their act together.
Gallagher – Twenty-six seconds after Ben Smith had made it 2-0 Brendan Gallagher took a pass out from Galchenyuk to make it a one-goal game and the Canadien escaped the period down only a goal.  It was Gallagher’s terrific backhand pass to Sergei Gonchar on the power play that set up the goal that evened the game at 2-2.
Carey Price, Marcus KrugerNot Their Finest Hour – It all worked out in the end but give the refereeing of Dennis LaRue and Ghislain Hebert a D-minus. In the second period Brandon Prust tripped over his own skates and fell against the boards without help and Patrick Kane was given a tripping penalty. Thirteen seconds later P.K. Subban scored . In the fifth minute of the third period Subban was given a phantom penalty for hooking Marian Hossa. And again it took only 13 seconds for Jonathan Toews to score on a rebound to tie the game at 3-3.
More Bad News Lars Eller took his last shift of the game seventeen minutes into the first period. He left the ice holding either his wrist or his hand and didn’t return. “Upper body injury” is all we’ve been told. Serious enough that the Habs have recalled Sven Andrighetto from Hamilton. Andrighetto will join the team in time for Saturday night’s game in Dallas. He scored his ninth goal of his AHL season Friday night against the Toronto Marlies.
Also Worth Mentioning – … Subban has picked up his game. Another goal, giving him two along with three assists in his last four games. He also had six shots on goal and led the Canadiens with five hits. ….P.A. Parenteau seems to have gotten the message. Exiled to the third and sometimes fourth line he had four shots on goal and seemed to be more involved than he has been recently. …..Alex Galchenyuk was very good again. ….another six shots on goal for Pacioretty, but nothing to show for it. ….Rare occasion when the Canadiens lost more faceoffs than they won. Only Malhotra was over 50%, winning 11 of 18.
Moving On – The Canadiens still have a chance to finish the road trip at .500 if they can handle the Stars in Dallas Saturday night. Andrighetto may make his NHL debut in the game. Dustin Tokarski will probably get the start.