Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Habs Stay Alive in a Wild One

What a game to bloody well miss to go play slow pitch!

The Canadiens, in the fight for their playoff lives, down 3-1 in the series going into Game Five, took their home-ice advantage and ran with it.  Well, to a point, I guess.

Four goals on 19 shots in the first 27 minutes of the game chased Henrik Lundqvist when the score was 4-1.  The Habs then took their foot off the gas pedal, it seemed, and a couple of bad bounces went the way of the Rangers, as they stormed back to tie the game in just over seven minutes from the 4-1 goal.

But wait, there was more!  Less than a minute later, Rene Bourque scored to put the Canadiens back in the lead and they never looked back from there.  A couple more goals in the 3rd, including a hat-trick goal for Bourque and the Canadiens escaped elimination again, with a 7-4 win.

With 11 goals in the game, you would have thought that the pool would have been overflowing with points, but there were a lot of points lost in limbo, thanks to players not in the 24 selected to be on the sheet.  The notable pool players in this game were Alex Galchenyuk (goal & assist), Max Pacioretty (goal & assist) and Andrei Markov (3 assists) for the Habs, while Derek Stepan (2 goals), Ryan McDonagh (2 assists) and Rick Nash (goal & assist) were notable for the Rangers.

It also sounds like there are going to be some hearings for players for some supplementary discipline, as John Moore, taken seven times in the pool, will get a call for his blindside hit on Dale Weise in the 3rd period.  They may be some other casualties, but none of them are going to be pool-related.

It wasn't noted in the Game Four notes, but Derek Stepan did miss that game after undergoing surgery on his broken jaw, an injury he suffered from a Brandon Prust hit in Game Three, but he was back in the Rangers line-up for Game Four and played an offensive role in their comeback from 4-1.  Stepan has 5 goals and 8 assists in these playoffs, good for the three teams that had taken him in Box 15.

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