Forward lines and defense pairings
Galchenyuk – De La Rose – Byron
Pacioretty – Danault – Shaw
Hudon – Plekanec – Gallagher
Deslauriers – Froese – Carr
Benn – Weber
Alzner – Petry
Mete – Schlemko
Jakub Jerabek, Joe Morrow
Ales Hemsky – concussion, Nikita Scherbak – knee, Al Montoya – concussion, Artturi Lehkonen – lower-body, Jonathan Drouin – lower-body
So close. The Canadiens came within one goal of one of the powerhouse teams in the NHL. And the winning goal went off the skate of David Schlemko.
If the Blues hadn’t got all the breaks, the Habs could have won.
As ludicrous as all that sounds, it was a stream of thought on social media following the game.
In truth, the score flattered the Canadiens.. greatly. And it was a testament to exceptional goaltending, spectacular at times, that Montreal had a chance to win this game.
After 20 minutes the score was tied at one, with St. Louis having a slight shot advantage. However, the second period was quite a different story. The Blues dominated for long stretches. The Canadiens were hemmed in their own zone, were second on most pucks and were being slowed down by the St. Louis defence.
Montreal was very fortunate to come out of the second frame only down by one. Shots were 13-6 for the Blues but frankly, the gap seemed much wider. The popular belief that the Canadiens are only a player or two away from contending seemed to be overly optimistic given the disparity between the two teams.
The Blues were patient, determined and confident. Their aggressive play forced Canadiens players to cough up the puck or try to make a play more quickly than they intended. Giveaways were 28-8 for Montreal.
While the final shot total was close, just 29-25 for St. Louis, scoring chances were not. The Blues outchanced the Canadiens 22-10. Which meant that the Blues were getting excellent quality scoring opportunities but Price was coming up with outstanding saves throughout the game.
Daniel Carr was another bright spot in the lineup. Carr assisted on the Canadiens first goal and provided the screen that helped Jordie Benn’s point shot into the back of the net. Carr continues his points streak since being recalled from Laval.
▲ Shea Weber, Jacob De La Rose, Daniel Carr, Carey Price, Andrew Shaw
▼ Brendan Gallagher, Karl Alzner, Max Pacioretty, Alex Galchenyuk, Phillip Danault, Charles Hudon, Paul Byron, Victor Mete