The Canadiens seem to prefer one-goal hockey games.

Against the Calgary Flames they blew a 4-0 lead, only to win the game on a goal by P.K. Subban in overtime. It marked the seventh time in the last eight games a Canadiens game was decided by a goal.  Their record over that span is 6-1-1.

Subban took a pass from Scott Gomez and roofed a shot over the shoulder of Flames goaltender Henrik Karlsson at 1:06 of the extra period for the winner.

Lars Eller, Michael Cammalleri, Andrei Kostitsyn and Jeff Halpern gave the Canadiens a 4-0 lead early in the second period. The Flames came back to score four goals on Alex Auld on only seven shots to tie the game, setting the stage for the Subban heroics. Neither starting goaltender finished the game. Miikka Kiprusoff was yanked after the fourth Canadiens goal. Auld came out of the game after former Hab Alex Tanguay tied the game at 2:56 of the third period. The win moved the Canadiens into a tie with the New York Rangers for sixth place in the Eastern Conference. The Canadiens have a game in hand.

Summing It Up – For the first half of the game, the Canadiens made the Flames look slow and overmatched. They were full marks for the comfortable 4-0 lead. As Jacques Martin was to say in his post game news conference, in the “new NHL” no lead is comfortable. Alex Auld looked in total control of things through the first period and a half and then he came apart. In the span of seven shots he gave up the four goals that tied the game. Give the Canadiens credit, from the point of the fourth goal, the Canadiens went back to their “bar-the-door” defensive game. The final seventeen minutes of the third period the Flames were managed only four shots on Carey Price and only one, by Jarome Iginla, was dangerous.

P.K. Subban was the Canadiens best even without the game winning goal. He played with confidence and creativity. Andrei Kostitsyn was named the game’s third star and earned it with a team leading four shots on goal and three hits. Lars Eller, playing with Plekanec and Cammalleri, had his best night in a month. The winning goal was started by Hal Gill, who blocked a shot by the Flames Adam Party and sent the puck up to Scott Gomez. Subban, just off the bench, joined the rush on the right side and got a perfect pass from Gomez. With Gionta also heading for the net, Subban was able to hit the top of the net with his hard wrister.   

Let the celebration begin. And it’s about that celebration! He seemed a little embarassed that he let it all hang out after his first NHL overtime goal, making him a target for another one of Don Cherry’s rants. Forget about it. It was pure joy. May the kid never lose that part of his game. After 2-8-0 in December, the Canadiens have answered with 7-1-1. Tuesday night, an intradivisional game against Buffalo. The Canadiens are 9-3-0 in Northeast division games.

The Winning Goal and Subban’s Celebration

The Goalscorers – Montreal -Eller (3rd( (Cammalleri-Plekanec); Cammalleri (13th) (Halpern-Subban); Kostitsyn (12th) (Weber-Spacek); Halpern (7th) (Moen-Spacek); Subban (4th) OT (Gomez-Gill). Calgary (Bourque (15th) (Jokinen-Sarich); Bouwmeester (5th) (unassisted); Kotalik (3rd) (Jokinen); Tanguay (11th) (Iginla-Morrison).

Shots on Goal – Calgary 10-10-8-0 = 28 Canadiens 12-10-6-1 = 29

The Three Stars – First – P.K. Subban (Game winning goal, 1 assist. Three shots. Plus-1) Second – Michael Cammalleri (1 goal, 1 assist. Plus-1). Third – Andrei Kostitsyn (1 goal, 4 shots, 3 hits, plus-1)

The Corsi/Fenwick Numbers

Game Number Team Player Number Goals Saved shots Missed Shots Fenwick+/- Blocked Shots Corsi+/-
20680 MTL 6 – D – SPACEK, JAROSLAV 2 1 5 7 3 3 -1 4 4 -1
20680 MTL 11 – C – GOMEZ, SCOTT 1 1 13 4 2 4 7 7 5 9
20680 MTL 13 – L – CAMMALLERI, MICHAEL 2 1 6 8 4 2 1 5 5 1
20680 MTL 14 – C – PLEKANEC, TOMAS 2 1 3 8 6 1 1 3 3 1
20680 MTL 15 – C – HALPERN, JEFF 2 1 3 4 2 2 0 3 3 0
20680 MTL 20 – D – WISNIEWSKI, JAMES 0 2 10 4 4 0 8 6 4 10
20680 MTL 21 – R – GIONTA, BRIAN 1 1 12 5 3 4 6 6 5 7
20680 MTL 31 – G – PRICE, CAREY 1 0 5 4 2 2 2 4 5 1
20680 MTL 32 – L – MOEN, TRAVIS 2 1 3 6 3 3 -2 4 3 -1
20680 MTL 35 – G – AULD, ALEX 4 4 15 15 8 9 -1 12 10 1
20680 MTL 44 – D – HAMRLIK, ROMAN 0 2 11 5 5 4 5 6 5 6
20680 MTL 46 – L – KOSTITSYN, ANDREI 2 1 3 6 3 3 -2 4 3 -1
20680 MTL 52 – L – DARCHE, MATHIEU 0 1 1 1 0 3 -4 3 3 -4
20680 MTL 58 – C – DESHARNAIS, DAVID 0 1 1 3 0 4 -7 3 4 -8
20680 MTL 67 – L – PACIORETTY, MAX 0 1 9 4 3 2 5 5 2 8
20680 MTL 68 – D – WEBER, YANNICK 2 0 5 5 4 4 2 4 4 2
20680 MTL 75 – D – GILL, HAL 3 1 4 7 2 4 -3 6 6 -3
20680 MTL 76 – D – SUBBAN, P.K. 3 2 5 10 2 7 -9 6 7 -10
20680 MTL 81 – C – ELLER, LARS 1 1 4 7 3 1 -1 3 3 -1
20680 MTL 94 – C – PYATT, TOM 1 1 1 1 0 3 -3 2 5 -6