Forward lines and defense pairings
Galchenyuk – Drouin – Lehkonen
Pacioretty – Danault – Hudon
Byron – Plekanec – Gallagher
Deslauriers – De La Rose – Shaw
Benn – Petry
Alzner – Schlemko
Morrow – Jerabek
Daniel Carr, Byron Froese, Victor Mete
Ales Hemsky – concussion, Shea Weber – lower-body
There was an odd feeling to this game. The contest on the Bell Centre ice between the Canucks and the Canadiens was clearly the undercard.
Describe Marc Bergevin’s press conference that preceded the game how you will: clumsy, bizarre, delusional, or just plain irresponsible. But after the general manager stumbled through a 30-minute performance trying to park the blame for his mistakes elsewhere, there was little oxygen left to support a National Hockey League game.
So give the Canadiens credit for taking a very workman-like approach to their west coast opponents. It was the boys from B.C. who led the way with Karl Alzner having one of his best games of the season. Post-game, Alzner credited equipment adjustments for his first goal of the campaign while adding an assist.
With the stomping grounds of his youth being featured on Rogers Hometown Hockey, Carey Price made 34 saves including 16 in the third period. The third B.C. guy, Brendan Gallagher, scored his team-leading 16th goal of the season and added an assist on Paul Byron’s late goal.
But this performance was not one to be immortalized in an oil painting. The game was exactly what it was: two weak teams at the bottom of the standings with plenty of mistakes on both sides. Montreal took advantage of plenty of juicy rebounds from Vancouver starter Anders Nilsson. As is often the case, Price was the difference.
▲ Carey Price, Max Pacioretty, Brendan Gallagher, Jacob De La Rose, Karl Alzner, Alex Galchenyuk, Tomas Plekanec, Paul Byron, Jeff Petry
▼ Jonathan Drouin, Marc Bergevin