Remaining Positive | Habs Notepad

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Habs News: NHL, Montreal Canadiens, Martin St. Louis, Jake Allen, Laval Rocket, Trois-Rivieres Lions

ake Allen, Montreal Canadiens (Photo by Vitor Munhoz/NHLI via Getty Images)

ROCKET SPORTS MEDIA | LAVAL, QC. — The Montreal Canadiens continued their four-game homestand on Saturday by hosting the New Jersey Devils. New Jersey had a 2-0 lead late in the second period when Denis Gurianov got the home team on the board. Former Hab Tomas Tatar sealed the 3-1 victory with an empty net goal with 1:30 remaining in regulation. 

“I think we played a good game. We had a lot of turnovers in the first period and we had to defend ourselves a lot. I know they spent a lot of time in our zone but we defended well and didn’t give them much. I was about that. In the second, we played behind them a little more. They’re a good team, we have to give them credit. They’re very fast, don’t give a lot of space, but I think we managed that well,” Martin St. Louis evaluated post game.

For the first time since February 17th, 1980, the Canadiens were part of a game where no penalties were called by the officials.

Jake Allen had a good performance in goal, making 36 saves and named the second star. The goalie also had a good start against the Carolina Hurricanes earlier in the week.

Remaining Positive

The Canadiens are currently in a stretch where they have recorded one win in their last eight games. With the Colorado Avalanche, Pittsburgh Penguins, Florida Panthers, Tampa Bay Lightning and Boston Bruins coming up as opponents over the next 11 days, it won’t be an easy task for Montreal to add in the win column.

Despite the results, or lack of, the players and the coaching staff remain positive and are still engaged on a nightly basis. It is a complete 180-degree turnaround to the atmosphere that reigned to begin the 2021-22 season.

Last year, players looked defeated and uninspired as the losses accumulated. The Bell Centre fans booed and the building was far from being sold out. This season, the seats are being filled and everyone is having a good time despite the team being at the bottom of the standings.

The players feed off the crowd’s energy. “It’s fun that the fans still support us even though we lost six straight games. We try to give a good show and give everything we have. I’m extremely proud of our group, we never give up,” David Savard said.

The Bell Centre crowd started the wave on Saturday even during a losing effort. St. Louis is not surprised of the fans support. “I grew up here, I played against the Canadiens. It’s always an extraordinary place to play and now being on the right side, it’s amazing to have the fans support and the ambiance.”

The coach added that he can’t wait to experience the atmosphere when the team makes the playoffs.

Rocket Split weekend

The Laval Rocket were on the road for a pair of games over the weekend. On Friday in Syracuse, Jean-Francois Houle was forced to use a lineup of 10 forwards and eight defencemen due to last minute injuries. Defenceman Nicolas Beaudin played on the wing of the third line. 

Laval had a 1-0 lead through 40 minutes when the Crunch forced overtime with a shorthanded goal in the third period. Pierrick Dube won the game 1:19 into three-on-three play. 

“I’m proud of how we competed. With players falling to combat before the game, the guys competed and we didn’t steal the game. We deserved to win it,” the coach said.

On Saturday, the score was 1-1 between the Rocket and the Springfield Thunderbirds through two periods before the home team took control with three goals in 2:22. It was all that was needed as Springfield headed on to 5-2 victory.

“I think we played really well. Credit to our players that gave everything. Our players work. It was a loss but what counts is that the work ethic is there,” Houle said.

On Sunday, Laval signed Louis Boudon to an amateur tryout contract. Boudon collected 36 points in 24 games in the CCHA for Lake Superior State University.

The Rocket face the Americans in Rochester on Wednesday before returning home for four games starting on Friday.

(Quotes courtesy of BPM Sports)

Lions Swept

The Trois-Rivieres Lions were in Adirondack over the weekend to face the Thunder. On Friday, Adirondack ended Joe Vrbetic‘s night 11:43 into the game after scoring three goals on six shots. The Thunder added two more goals before the Lions answered with three consecutive goals. Trois-Rivieres ran out of time as Adirondack won 6-3.

“It’s hard to explain how we got off to such a bad start. We all knew what was at stake in this match, against the team we had to beat. But there was no spark in the first. It’s as if there were two teams from two different leagues on the ice,” coach and general manager Marc-Andre Bergeron said.

On Sunday, Adirondack had a one-goal lead through 40 minutes before adding two more goals in the third to head to a 5-2 victory and handing Trois-Rivieres a third consecutive loss.

“We played a better game than yesterday and had our chances to score. We gave ourselves a chance to win, but things didn’t work out for us,” Bergeron said.

The Lions begin a five-game homestand on Friday when hosting the Florida Everblades on Friday at the Colisee Videotron.

(Quotes courtesy of Le Nouvelliste)

Listen to the Canadiens Connection podcast

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By Chris G., Senior Writer
All Habs Hockey Magazine
Copyright © 2022 Rocket Sports

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