GAME #26 – WEBER TAKES CONTROL – Canadiens-5 NY Rangers-2 (Dec. 1, 2018)

Dec 2nd, 2018 | By | Category: Canadiens, Canadiens Game Story, Latest News

The Canadiens ended a five game losing streak – including three in a row at home- with a convincing 5-2 win over the New York Rangers Saturday night. The Canadiens outshot the Rangers in a big way in every period for a total of 41-22. With two goals each from Shea Weber and Artturi Lehkonen the Canadiens took a 4-0 lead before giving up two later in the second period.  Tomas Tatar scored the third period’s only goal.

MAN MOUNTAIN

Weber‘s first game in a year Tuesday was very good. His second game was terrific.

He scored the game’s first two goals; the first on one of his blazing slap shots, the second off a breakaway.

The second was all-the-more impressive because he started the play by breaking up a play in front of Carey Price and then joined the rush to put himself alone in front of the Ranger goal for a top-corner wrister. When Weber shoots he hits the net; in this game five of his seven shots were on target (the other two were courageously blocked). At the other end of the ice, nobody was standing around in front of Price when Weber was on the scene.

DROUGHT ENDED

Nobody was complaining too much about Artturi Lehknon‘s scoring drought because he has been doing a lot of the little things in the right hockey way since the start of the season. After scoring only twice in the first twenty-five games it was playing the right way that allowed him to double his total. He took the wrist shot on a 2-on-1 break with Jesperi Kotkaniemi for what turned out to be the winning goal and, after fullfilling a forechecking role he moved to the right spot when Paul Byron forced the turnover for the clincher which made it 4-0.

THIRD STAR

Speaking of playing the game the right way, that was exactly what Tomas Tatar has been doing since game one of the season. This was one of his better efforts. Playing on his 28th burthday, Tatar’s second effort pass to Weber while flat on his belly set up the game’s second goal and he was rewarded for a terrific night with his 11th goal while collecting the rebound on a Kenny Agostino shot for the Canadiens fifth and final goal.

THE RETURN

The Canadiens placed Nikita Scherbak on waivers so Paul Byron could come back in the lineup. When your entire game isn’t there at least make sure you look after your own end of the ice. Byron showed the timing effects of missing 14 games but, playing with Kotkaniemi and Lehkonen, he took care of his defence and wound up with an assist on Lehkonen’s first goal when his forecheck forced Neal Pionk to cough up the puck for Lehkonen’s second goal. His final line read – a team-leading five hits and two blocked shots along with one shot. His timing will come.

ALSO WORTH MENTIONING

….No reason to criticize Carey Price on either goal. The first was started by a clumsy Jeff Petry giveaway inside the Canadiens zone. The second was a power play chip shot by a wide open Ryan Strome. He was particularly good in the first period after Weber had made it 1-0. It was Price’s first win at home in exactly at month (November first).  Now the question is: facing only twenty-two shots, will he play his second game in twenty-four hours vs. San Jose Sunday night?

….Brett Kulak spent the night paired with Weber and logged 20:38; all five-on-five. He seemed to gain confidence ast the game unfolded.  I see no reason why they shouldn’t be together for the next game.

….I’m still liking what Kenny Agostino brings to the team. He’s solid defensively and Claude Julien is even giving him time on the second power play unit. He and Michael Chaput have brought a bit life to what was an offensive black fourth-line hole.

….Good all round night for Max Domi who shared the team lead with Weber at five shots on goal. He also was around the puck the entire game and won six of eleven faceoffs (55%). He drew second assist on Weber’s first goal.

….In all situations the Canadiens had 14 high danger scoring chances to only 5 for the Rangers. Five on five it was 9-3 for the Canadiens.

….This was the 18th time in his career that Weber has scored two goals tying him for first among active players. He has one career hattrick (2015 vs. Detroit while with Nashville)

….The Canadiens have now poured 91 shots on opponents in the last two games including 49 against Carolina Tuesday night.

MOVING ON

With the five game losing streak ended, game four of the five game home stand against San Jose Sunday night. They’ll wrap it up on Tuesday against the Senators before heading out to play the Senators, Chicago and Minnesota Tuesday, Chicago and the following Tuesday.

One Comment to “GAME #26 – WEBER TAKES CONTROL – Canadiens-5 NY Rangers-2 (Dec. 1, 2018)”

  1. Ned Stark, Warden of the North says:

    As noted in the game recap above there were a lot of good things evident tonite vs Rangers.
    1) Weber played big tonite at both ends and chipped in with 2 very nice goals.
    2) Defensive 1st pairing was very good and Kulak played a strong game too.
    3) Nice seeing Byron back in the lineup. The 2nd goal by Lehkonen was due to his perseverance. Took a viscious cross-check that left him on his knees for a few moments but then got up and put it into gear going after the Ranger player coming out from behind the net with the puck and in the process of tying him up he created a turnover that led to a quick goal. We’ve been missing that intensity and speed on the Left Wing of the 3rd line.
    4) Really nice to see the guys put the Speed skates on and really put pressure on NYR’s who had few answers to deal with it. Kudos to the Top 9
    5) Price: it was nice to see Mr Saturday Night get the W!! He had no chance on either Ranger goal scored. He’s taken a lot of crap about his play or lack there of in recent weeks. But the Defense and Forwards really need to take a look at their efforts in our end. We are just way to loose inside our blue line. Price made some real nice saves tonite and looked sharp in net and with moving the puck around.

    The Not So Good:
    Ok, let me get this straight they sent Mete down to work on his defensive play. Julien said he needed to work and improve on parts of his game. Ok! Well my question to Julien is: Have you noticed the following guys inside your blue line? Namely: Benn, Reilly and Scherlemko?? Don’t they require remedial work on their poor ( being nice) play? I like Reilly but he’s like Mete: both are somewhat small, are fast on their wheels north of our blue line, jump into the rush and decent passers. However in our end they are easily manhandled by bigger forwards along the boards and in front of the net. But what sport was Benn playing? Guy is just lost out there in our end -> the guy turns the puck over so easily with his clumsy play back there. Schlemko isn’t far behind in the extreme poor play department. Both of Benn and Schlemko need to be sent packing starting when Juuksen can return. Although Bergy will probably opt to send Kulak down. The idea is the team is farther ahead without these 2 guys on the ice. I understand they are peacemakers but Bergy needs to move/waive them. Since Leafs are going into Cash Crunch time Bergy should look at acquiring Jake Gardiner to be Weber’s FT partner. We don’t need any more of his bandaid moves of acquiring older vets who’s game is in deep decline.

    Team is still leaving too many guys wide open inside our blue line. You see 5 guys come back and they are all looking at the end boards. No one has their head on a swivel to pick up their checks. Drouin is lost in our end. He’s not sure where he should be but he’s rarely on the LE boards to get the outlet pass and get the puck out of our end. We have had a ton of guys coaching this team that are supportive to be Defensive Specialists – Martin, Therrien and now CJ. We should be much better in our end especially around coverage and getting the puck out safely. No wonder Scherbak got waived as no one could properly teach him what he should be doing in our end.

    West Coast here we come! Hope we can score and win in that black hole they call SJ.

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