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Cole Caufield gives the Canadiens victory (once again) in overtime
After an uninspiring loss to the Lightning on Tuesday night, the Canadiens were trying to put the brakes on a four-game losing streak when they travelled to Michigan to take on the Red Wings.

In the warm-up, Martin St-Louis separated Nick Suzuki and Cole Caufield for a surprise. Cayden Primeau got the start tonight.

On the other side, here’s the lineup sent into the fray for the Red Wings.

Note that Ben Chiarot and Jeff Petry, two former members of the CH, started the game on the ice.

Mike Matheson has had a tougher time of it in recent games. The defenseman seems to be bothered by something (be it fatigue or injury) and no longer has the aplomb he once showed since arriving in Montreal.

Tonight, however, Matheson benefited from a good dose of confidence, as he took advantage of a fine pass from Alex Newhook to get a good scoring chance in the slot.

A wrist shot later, the Tricolore led 1-0.

Matheson’s goal was the only net of the first period. The CH led 1-0 after 20 minutes, a solid improvement on the last game (trailing by four goals).

In the second period, both teams needed a little time to get going, but in the second half, the scoring opportunities came.

Nick Suzuki got the ball rolling by breaking free on a power play… but his shot hit the post hard.

But that seemed to give the Habs a bit of gas, who then took advantage of a power play to see Sean Monahan score (at the same time as RDS was experiencing technical problems that cut off the sound of Pierre Houde and Marc Denis).

The problem was that the video replay showed that the Tricolore was offside on the sequence. The goal was ultimately disallowed, despite Monahan’s fine effort on the sequence.

And while the video replay wasn’t kind to the Tricolore, it was much more so for the Red Wings. Late in the second period, Christian Fischer deflected the puck with his hand, but after going to the replay, the referees ruled that the move was not intentional.

A goal for which it’s pretty hard to blame Cayden Primeau… but a goal that brought the two teams back level.

After 40 minutes, the score was 1-1.

In the third period, the Tricolore once again found themselves on the power play… and this time, they scored a goal that the video replay couldn’t take away.

A quick shot from Suzuki gave the lead back to the Habs.

However, a few minutes later, Suzuki committed a blunder in his zone, as he committed a turnover in his zone by passing the puck in the direction of J.T. Compher.

Compher couldn’t have asked for more… and one good shot later, the game was tied once again.

In the middle of the period, Brendan Gallagher and Moritz Seider had it out for each other in the home zone. The two guys got into a bit of a tussle, and each took a minor penalty for roughing.

A rather strange duel, all the same.

The two clubs were unable to break the tie after 60 minutes, so overtime was needed.

In overtime, James Reimer had quite a brain cramp, as the goalie outright held Cole Caufield’s stick. This gave the Tricolore a numerical advantage, and they took full advantage.

And, of course, who better than Caufield to give the club victory? The little maverick ended his five-game scoreless streak with the winning goal.

Final score: 3-2 Montreal (Prol.)

The Canadiens return to action on Saturday night, when the Boston Bruins visit the Bell Centre.


– The CH ended its four-game losing streak tonight. It wasn’t always pretty, but in the end, they came away with the two points. It’s going to feel good.

– Mike Matheson finally looked like the Mike Matheson we’ve come to know over the past year in Montreal. The defenseman picked up three points and regained the composure we’ve come to know him for. We’ll have to keep up this level for a series of games, but at least it was an encouraging evening for him.

– Juraj Slafkovský didn’t get a ton of playing time, but I really liked his chemistry with Cole Caufield. The Slovakian showed some nice things and had some good moments on the power play. Imagine if he had Kirby Dach at the center of his trio instead of Christian Dvorak…

However, it’s worth noting that Slaf was benched in the final minutes of the third period. He really didn’t have a bad game, though.

– Cayden Primeau really didn’t have a bad game. It’s hard for a goalie to perform when he’s not getting regular playing time, but Primeau was ready tonight and got off to a very encouraging start. A night like this gives the Canadiens reason to continue believing in the young goalie’s potential.

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