The Canadiens took advantage of the only power play opportunity of the night to edged the Carolina Hurricanes 4-3 at the Bell Centre Saturday night.

Andrei Kostitsyn scored on the power play only seconds after an apparent Brian Gionta goal was waved off by a quick whistle. The other Canadiens goals were scored by Michael Cammalleri, Lars Eller and Tomas Plekanec.

Scoring for the Hurricanes, who took an early 1-0 lead, were Jussi Jokinen, Tuomo Ruutu and Corey Stillman.

The Hurricanes outshot the Canadiens 31-27. With Carey Price under the weather, Alex Auld drew the start in goal against Cam Ward.

Summing It Up – A very big victory against a team that was threatening their position in the standings. A little rocky because of that early goal which was scored when Alex Auld was stripped of the puck behind his own net and wound up scrambling as the Hurricanes took a 1-0 lead. The Canadiens recovered to tie, and then take the lead. Not a great second period for the home town team, but they got their game back in the third to win it.

Canadiens special teams won the game. The Canadiens had to kill off a four minute highsticking penalty to Scott Gomez in the first period and two other minor penalties before they had that successful power play opportunity.

Lots of good stuff in this game. Jeff Halpern on the Plekanec line continues to be a positive. Plekanec and Cammalleri each had a goal and assist.

David Desharnais continues to be slowly integrated into the system. In his 11:11 ice time he produced four shots on goal and won seven of ten faceoffs. Not a bad night’s work.

The same might be said for Lars Eller who, given his chance to play his natural centre ice position, also had a very good night. The Subban/Gill defensive pairing had a great night, especially P.K. could have taken one of the game stars.

Alex Auld wasn’t great but, to be fair, playing once every two weeks or so is not the best way to stay sharp mentally, or physically. It was suggested that perhaps a two week conditioning stint in Hamilton would be the best thing for not only his game, but for the Canadiens.

The Conference standings:

    5th – Washington 63GP 76pts.6th– Montreal 63GP 73pts

    7th – NYRangers 63GP 70pts.

    8th – Carolina 63GP 67pts.

    9th – Buffalo 61GP 65pts.

    10th -Toronto 62GP 62pts.

Quote of the night. From Michael Cammalleri. Commenting on the importance of piling up points in the standings,

“We don’t want to have to tie the Leafs in the final game of the season again to make the playoffs.”

The Goalscorers – Montreal – Cammalleri (15th) (Plekanec); Eller (4th) (Kostitsyn); Plekanec (20th) (Cammalleri-Hamrlik); Kostitsyn )15th PPG (Hamrlik-Subban). Carolina – Jokinen (16th) (Sutter-Tlusty); Ruutu (15th) (Larose-Samson); Stillman (8th) (Skinner-Gleason).

Shots on Goal – Carolina 11-13-7 = 31 Canadiens 7-13-7 = 27

The Three Stars First – Michael Cammalleri (1g 1ass – plus-2) Second – Tomas Plekanec (1g 1ass – plus-2) Third – Andrei Kostitsyn (1g 1ass – minus-1)

The Corsi/Fenwick Numbers

Game Number Team Player Number Goals Saved shots Missed Shots Fenwick+/- Blocked Shots Corsi+/-
20928 MTL 11 – C – GOMEZ, SCOTT 0 1 5 9 3 3 -5 6 1 0
20928 MTL 13 – L – CAMMALLERI, MICHAEL 2 0 2 7 2 3 -4 6 6 -4
20928 MTL 14 – C – PLEKANEC, TOMAS 2 0 2 7 2 2 -3 5 6 -4
20928 MTL 15 – C – HALPERN, JEFF 2 0 2 8 2 3 -5 6 6 -5
20928 MTL 20 – D – WISNIEWSKI, JAMES 1 1 6 7 5 4 0 4 6 -2
20928 MTL 21 – R – GIONTA, BRIAN 0 1 6 10 2 3 -6 6 1 -1
20928 MTL 32 – L – MOEN, TRAVIS 1 1 3 2 1 1 1 0 5 -4
20928 MTL 35 – G – AULD, ALEX 3 3 19 22 8 8 -3 15 14 -2
20928 MTL 44 – D – HAMRLIK, ROMAN 1 1 6 9 3 4 -4 4 7 -7
20928 MTL 46 – L – KOSTITSYN, ANDREI 1 2 3 3 1 2 -2 0 4 -6
20928 MTL 55 – D – SOPEL, BRENT 1 1 2 11 2 3 -10 6 5 -9
20928 MTL 57 – L – POULIOT, BENOIT 0 0 8 2 3 0 9 3 2 10
20928 MTL 58 – C – DESHARNAIS, DAVID 0 0 9 4 2 0 7 3 3 7
20928 MTL 67 – L – PACIORETTY, MAX 0 2 5 8 2 4 -7 6 1 -2
20928 MTL 68 – D – WEBER, YANNICK 1 1 2 6 3 3 -4 6 3 -1
20928 MTL 75 – D – GILL, HAL 1 1 11 7 2 1 5 5 3 7
20928 MTL 76 – D – SUBBAN, P.K. 1 1 11 4 1 1 7 5 4 8
20928 MTL 81 – C – ELLER, LARS 1 2 3 2 1 3 -2 1 4 -5
20928 MTL 94 – C – PYATT, TOM 0 0 9 4 3 0 8 3 3 8