The beloved Canadiens dropped four games in a row, capped by a
5-0 loss to the floundering Washington Capitals last Saturday night.
Montreal scored five goals in the four games, two in the final
Then ... two wins in three nights, both against teams with four-game
"It's good for the confidence, there's no doubt about that,"
Montreal coach Michel Therrien said after his team outplayed the
Boston Bruins from start to finish and posted a 4-1 victory Thursday
night. "Even when things were going not our way, we tried to stay
really positive. We knew what we needed to work on, and a lot of
credit to the players, they paid attention to detail and the things
that we tried to make sure we'd get better at.
"This is two solid games, I believe that we played — and coming
here to this building, this is a tough team to play against in
Boston, so a good team effort."
"We needed that, especially after dropping some big games by big
scores as well," said center Daniel Briere, who had a goal (his
eighth) and an assist Thursday. "We were in a tough stretch, nothing
was going our way, nothing was working. And to beat Carolina that
was on a hot streak ... we were at home and people were saying they
were tired but to come to this building tonight and to do it in
Boston, a tough place to play, a playoff-type atmosphere game, it
was definitely good to see a lot of players raise their level of
After goalie Carey Price shut out the Carolina Hurricanes in
Montreal Tuesday night, backup Peter Budaj stopped 34 shots Thursday
and improved his career record against the Bruins to 4-1, including
4-0 in Boston.
Winning their fifth straight against the Bruins, the Canadiens
(29-20-5) chased Boston goaltender Tuukka Rask in the second period.
Rask, who gave up three goals on 18 shots and was clearly angry when
he left in favor of Chad Johnson, fell to 2-10-2 lifetime against
Right winger Brendan Gallagher had two assists and defenseman Alexei
Emelin (his first), left winger Max Pacioretty (No. 23) and right
winger Brian Gionta (his ninth) also scored for Montreal.
The first-place Bruins, losing for only the third time in their last
15 home games, are 34-16-3 and eight points ahead of the Canadiens
in the Atlantic Division.
"Not much to really say," said left winger Milan Lucic. "We weren't
sharp in our decision-making, they were first on pucks, they won
more battles than we did from the drop of the puck until the end.
It's unfortunate when we come out with that type of effort against
this team once again — you gotta suck it up and call a spade a
"It wasn't good enough from our emotional standpoint and from a
[to top of second column]
Bruins coach Claude Julien was testy after the game when it came to
the goalie change, even having words with a local writer.
Rask said, "I played as long as they tell me to play. I just tried
to battle out there as hard as I can and stay out there as long as I
possibly can. Today lasted a little more than a period and that's
Defenseman Dougie Hamilton scored his fifth goal of the season for
the Bruins, who heard boos from the home crowd as the game ended.
Rask is 88-48-7 against the rest of the league besides Montreal.
Budaj is 119-102-34 against the rest of the league besides Boston.
Rask, lifted after Gionta deflected his power-play goal past him
with 8:06 left in the second period, stormed down the runway that
leads to the locker room. He returned a few minutes later and,
seeing the door to the bench open during a stoppage, slammed it.
Johnson gave up a breakaway goal to Briere on the first shot he saw,
which made it 4-1, but held the Habs scoreless the rest of the way.
The Canadiens had the energy advantage throughout and took a 1-0
lead when Emelin's shot found its way through just 2:16 into the
NOTES: Bruins G Tuukka Rask was pulled from a game for the fourth
time this season but the first time at home. ... Jan. 30 is the
latest date ever for the Canadiens' first visit of a season to
Boston. ... The Canadiens recalled RW Christian Thomas from Hamilton
in case RW Brandon Prust could not play because of a shoulder
injury. Prust played and Thomas did not dress. ... The Bruins
continue their four-game homestand against the Edmonton Oilers on
Saturday, and the Canadiens open a four-game home stay against the
Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday night. ... Bruins D Adam McQuaid
missed his fifth straight game with a leg injury. ... The Bruins, in
their 90th year, continued to honor their nine decades by
recognizing the 1920s, when Boston became the first U.S. franchise.
Former club president Weston Adams Jr. dropped the first puck before
Thursday night's game.
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