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Habs Report

by Archives November 4, 2008

The Montreal Canadiens were able to go 3-0 last week despite playing only one solid period in each of the three games.
Netminder Carey Price was perfect in the shootout against the Carolina Hurricanes on Tuesday, marking the first home-ice victory for the Habs against Carolina since February 2004.
Price stopped 31 shots, while Alex Kovalev scored an unassisted goal and Alex Tanguay was successful on a penalty shot. Captain Saku Koivu had the only shoot out goal as the Habs downed the Canes 3-2. Despite getting the OT win, the Canadiens seemed sloppy and out of sync for most of the game.
Their game-play didn’t improve much as the week went on. The Koivu brothers met on Thursday when the Habs paid a visit to the Minnesota Wild. Price stopped 28 shots including Minnesota’s power play – the third best in the league – a whopping 10 times. While the Habs’ penalty kill was impressive, the team demonstrated a lack of discipline, and made many of the same sloppy plays that were seen on Tuesday night.
Francis Bouillon and Andrei Markov each scored as the Habs took the game 2-1 in what was overall not a very impressive performance.
Saturday’s game against the New York Islanders seemed like a write-off after the second period when the Habs were down 4-1. But in classic Canadiens fashion, the Habs came roaring back with four unanswered goals in the last 13 minutes of the third period to take the win 5-4.
Tomas Plekanec – who has had some trouble finding his scoring touch this season – scored twice and had two assists in the stunning comeback effort. Likewise, Kovalev slid two pucks – including the game winner – past former Canadiens back-up goalie Yann Danis while also getting credit for two assists. Long Island native Christopher Higgins also scored for the Habs, netting his first goal of the season.
Price stopped 27 shots after letting in a couple of questionable goals. Like good teams should do, the Habs found the scoring touch necessary to compensate for a less-than-stellar performance from their goaltender.
Saturday’s third period of the game was by far the team’s best performance of the week.
Even though their play wasn’t spectacular, the Habs still took all three of their games last week to bring their tally to an impressive 8-1-1. They are currently second in the Eastern Conference behind the New York Rangers, who have played four more games than the Habs.
The Canadiens will have all week to rest up and prepare for their next game against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Friday. The Habs will wrap up their four-game road-trip on Saturday against the Toronto Maple Leafs.

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