DETROIT (Ticker) — Carey Price made 15 of his 32 saves in the
third period and the Montreal Canadiens scored three times in
the second session to top the Detroit Red Wings, 3-1, on
Tomas Plekanec scored on the power play, Christopher Higgins
added a goal just 80 seconds later in the decisive period and
Price made it stand up in his first career start in Detroit.
“I thought we played a great game, a great defensive game,”
Plekanec said. “We used our speed.”
Maxim Lapierre also tallied for Montreal, which bounced back
from a pair of back-to-back shootout losses to improve to 4-1-1
against the Western Conference this season.
With Marian Hossa in the penalty box for roughing, Plekanec fed
defenseman Andrei Markov and ripped a return pass from the right
faceoff circle past Ty Conklin for the go-ahead goal with 7:43
left in the second.
Higgins added an insurance tally when he picked up a loose puck
and backhanded it toward Conklin from the left circle. The puck
deflected off a leg in front for Higgins’ fifth goal of the
“I’m a big believer in creating your own good bounces,” Higgins
said. “We played our positions and were able to take advantage
of them (good bounces).”
“They won more one-on-one battles,” Detroit coach Mike Babcock
said. “They played everyone back, clogged up the neutral zone.
We turned it over too many times. They passed it off Nick’s
foot there to get the first one and they were off to the races.”
Price, who did his best work in the third, made nine saves in
the first and eight in the second.
Johan Franzen tallied for the 10th time this season to pull
Detroit within two goals with 6:29 remaining in the third
period. But the Red Wings were unable to get closer as they
dropped consecutive games for just the second time this season.
“I think they were clogging up the neutral zone pretty good,”
Detroit center Henrik Zetterberg said. “We couldn’t get the
puck behind them. They took advantage of a few of our mistakes
and we couldn’t find a way to get through enough.”
Lapierre opened the scoring 5:23 into the first period. He
flipped a puck from behind the net and it went off Detroit
defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom’s skate and into the net.
“It’s tough, but two points is more important,” Price said of
losing the shutout. “Probably one of our more complete games of
the year, at both ends of the rink.”
Montreal’s Alex Tanguay left the game midway through the first
period after being leveled by defenseman Brad Stuart. He did