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Habs Lose Game and Goalie Price

Everything that could have gone wrong, went wrong for the Montreal Canadiens Tuesday night. With their 3-2 loss the the Ottawa Senators, Montreal is now only one loss away from elimination in the first round series.

But they also may be without goalie Carey Price in their quest to survive. Price suffered a lower-body injury on the last shot of regulation and didn’t start the overtime period. Peter Budaj came in and gave up the game winning goal two-and-a-half minutes into the extra frame.

Kyle Turris scored that goal, but only after Ottawa tied the game with 22 seconds left in the third. Montreal built their lead at the start of the second period and just couldn’t hold the lead to the finish.

PK Subban and Alex Galchenyuk scored one minute and two seconds apart early in the second to break the 0-0 tie. Their goals were almost identical, with the scorer picking up a pass, skating in to the top of the circle and firing a hard wrist shot into the upper part of the net.

This alone made tonight’s game very different. Now Montreal held the cards and didn’t have to worry about coming from behind against the wall that is Craig Anderson. They continued to press anyways, firing 14 shots towards the Ottawa goal in the second.

The third period was a different story. Ottawa came out flying and Montreal was once again chasing the puck and watching the clock slowing tick down. The clock always moves slower when you’re in the lead. At the 12 minute mark, Ottawa broke Price’s shutout bid and the game really started to fall apart for the Habs.

And it came on a very controversial goal. Chris Neil fired a puck across the ice and it bounced off of Mika Zibanejad’s skate and into the wide-open net. The replay made it look like the puck was kicked in but the ruling was a good goal and Ottawa had the fire they needed to finish the job.

“I didn’t think it was a goal,” Habs forward Jeff Halpern said after the game. “But I don’t know, I could be completely wrong.”

Ottawa didn’t let up for the rest of the period and off a scramble in front of the net, Cory Conacher tied the game. Brandon Prust was injured on the play and in a weak attempt to clear the puck, instead sent it right into the crowd of bodies in front of Price.

It wasn’t until a harmless Zibanejad shot as the buzzer went to end the third did Price get hurt. The shot went over the net, but when the goalie went down to his knees, something bad happened and he limped off the ice in very clear pain.

Habs Lose Game and Goalie Price
OTTAWA, CANADA – MAY 7: Craig Anderson #41 and Marc Methot #3 of the Ottawa Senators guard against Brandon Prust #8 of the Montreal Canadiens in Game Four of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2013 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs, at Scotiabank Place, on May 7, 2013 in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.
(Photo by Jana Chytilova/Freestyle Photography/Getty Images)

All of these factors fell in line late in the game and allowed Ottawa to steal the victory. Michel Therrien, the Habs coach, was at a loss for words after the game.

“We came to play and we certainly deserved a better fate,” he said. “It’s tough to explain.”

But he refused to say his team didn’t put the effort in.

“I thought we were pushing the pace and didn’t give up many scoring chances,” Therrien said. “It’s not supposed to happen like this.”

There was no update given on the status of Price or Prust after the game. Coming into Tuesday, Brian Gionta, Ryan White, Lars Eller and Alexei Emelin were all out of the lineup due to injuries. If Prust and Price have to miss time too, the Habs will be forced to test their depth against a mostly healthy Ottawa team.

And with only one loss remaining, the Habs have to overcome their losses and find a way to survive.

Josh Beneteau
Hockey has always been a passion of mine and once I realized I would never make it as a player, I still wanted a career in the sport. With my writing, I get to be a part of the sport I love, safely in front of a laptop screen. I am currently studying journalism at Ryerson University in Toronto and I hope my degree and my many writing experiences lead to a successful career in the field.
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