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Koivu keys Canadiens past Oilers

MONTREAL (Ticker) -- Captain Saku Koivu scored his second goal

of the game just 1:40 into overtime as the Montreal Canadiens

presented Bob Gainey with a victory in his return to coaching, a

4-3 triumph over the Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday.

Alex Tanguay recorded a goal and an assist and Glen Metropolit

also scored for Montreal, which played its first game after

firing Guy Carbonneau as its coach on Monday.

Defenseman Mathieu Schneider notched two assists and All-Star

Carey Price made 29 saves for the Canadiens, who improved to

7-4-1 in their last 12 games.

"It's coming along. The guys are playing real well in front of

me, and that really helps my game," Price said. "When the guys

are playing great, I can just sit back and relax a bit more back


All-Star defenseman Sheldon Souray registered a goal and an

assist, Sam Gagner and Andrew Cogliano also scored and Dwayne

Roloson turned aside 22 shots for Edmonton, which finished its

four-game road trip with a 1-1-2 mark.

"It stings when you lose a game like that, when you are up with

less than six minutes left," Oilers coach Craig MacTavish said.

"It was disappointing, but (there are) a lot of good positive

signs the way we played, and now we have to build some momentum

when we get back home."

"It's disappointing, but we will move on," Edmonton defenseman

Steve Staios added. "We have to get comfortable playing with a

lead in the third."

After Koivu leveled the contest with 4:35 remaining in the third

period, the Canadiens gained an advantage in overtime when

Edmonton's Patrick O'Sullivan was whistled for slashing just 50

seconds into the extra session.

With his team on the power play, Koivu sent the Bell Centre

faithful home with a smile by deflecting Schneider's blast from

just inside the blue line past Roloson for his 13th goal of the


"This is a huge win for us, for everybody, but obviously for a

new coach coming in. It's not an easy situation," Koivu said.

"But it's a lot easier to go from here, to wake up tomorrow

morning and go to work, because we got these two points."

Koivu's tally made a winner of Gainey, who has served as the

club's general manager since June 2003. The five-time Stanley

Cup winner previously had been Montreal's interim coach for the

final 41 regular-season games in 2005-06.

Gagner gave Edmonton a 3-2 lead and capped a three-goal second

period by poking home a loose puck on the doorstep with 88

seconds remaining in the session.

"The second period, we had enough bonfires burning that we

needed a couple of fire departments to put them out if we were

going to go after all of them," Gainey said. "I thought we

should just focus on one or two things and see if we could

loosen up our players."

Souray did not play in the third period due to a lower body

injury, but MacTavish does not believe the blue-liner will be

sidelined for long.

"He'll be evaluated tomorrow, but we don't anticipate that it

will be that long," MacTavish said. "It happened right at the

very end of the second. He wanted to go out in the third, but

we didn't think it was worth the risk."


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