for this game

Ryder's late goal helps Canadiens edge Sabres

Jan 21, 2007 - 4:58 AM
MONTREAL (Ticker) -- The Montreal Canadiens failed to cash in on a late power play. Thanks to Michael Ryder, it hardly mattered.

Ryder scored with 2:53 remaining in the third period, snapping a tie and giving the Canadiens a 4-3 victory over the Buffalo Sabres.

After having a three-goal lead disappear midway through the third, Montreal received a chance to move back in front when Buffalo's Nathan Paetsch was called for hooking with 5:31 to go.

However, the Sabres were able to successfully kill the penalty, keeping alive their hopes of extending their winning streak to three games. But the Canadiens would not be denied as they improved to 3-1-2 against their Northeast Division rivals this season.

"I can't be disappointed with the battle," Buffalo coach Lindy Ruff said. "I can be disappointed with a couple of decisions that were made."

Alexander Perezhogin set up the winning tally, carrying down the left wing into the faceoff circle before passing to Ryder, who redirected the puck past goaltender Martin Biron from the doorstep for his 15th of the campaign.

"Perezhogin just went wide there and took the one defenseman with him," Ryder said. "It was a 2-on-1 and I just went to the far post, and he made a good pass."

"We made a mistake late in the game," Ruff said. "We gave up a rush and I thought Teppo (Numminen) didn't play the rush very well, and (fellow defenseman Dmitri Kalinin) didn't read it very well either. We gave up a pretty good opportunity when we should have done a better job protecting the middle of the ice."

Rookie Guillaume Latendresse, captain Saku Koivu and defenseman Francis Bouillon also scored for Montreal, which ended a five-game home losing streak vs. Buffalo.

"It was a great win," Canadiens center Chris Higgins said. "We let them back in the game, but Rydsie got the big goal at the end, and there's a lot of smiles in this dressing room."

Daniel Briere tallied twice and Derek Roy also scored for the Sabres, who had not lost in Montreal since November 5, 2005.

Facing the top team in the Eastern Conference, the Canadiens stormed out to a 3-0 lead behind a pair of first-period power-play goals and a rare tally by a blue-liner.

Exactly eight minutes into the game, Latendresse received a gift to open the scoring. Tomas Plekanec dumped in the puck from high along the left wing boards, and Biron vacated his crease to attempt to stop it behind the net.

But the puck took a strange bounce and wound up in the crease, where Latendresse tapped it in for his 10th of the season and a 1-0 lead.

Koivu ended an 11-game drought with 30 seconds remaining in the first, converting a feed from Alexei Kovalev during a man advantage. Defenseman Andrei Markov's shot from the left point went wide and caromed off the end boards to Kovalev, whose pass from the right side of the net was tapped in by Koivu.

"Maybe we'll just forget about special teams for a while and just go out there and see what happens," Biron said. "We gave up two (power-play) goals. They were bad bounces, but they were goals nonetheless."

It was the veteran center's 502nd career point, tying him with Ralph Backstrom for 20th place on the franchise list.

"We hung in there the whole time and we got off to an early lead, which was good," Montreal defenseman Sheldon Souray said. "We were able to win the game, and that was a huge confidence booster."

Bouillon scored his first goal in 16 games at 4:49 of the second, creating a three-goal bulge. But Briere began his fifth multi-goal effort of the season at 9:04 and Roy drew Buffalo within one later in the session with his third tally in four games.

Briere forged a 3-3 tie at 8:37 of the third, redirecting defenseman Brian Campbell's pass by All-Star netminder Cristobal Huet from just below the left circle for his 18th goal.

"We just have to weather the storm," Briere said. "I think the good thing is that we never quit and we came back hard in the second half of the game."

"We weren't panicking," Higgins said. "We knew Cristobal was going to keep us in the game and just kept playing our game."








  • ** CONFIRMED **
    NHL
    BUFFALO 3
    MONTREAL 4

    Jan 20 9:51 PM


  • NHL
    BUFFALO 3
    MONTREAL 4 1:23 LEFT, 3RD PRD

    Sabres vs. CanadiensJan 20 9:39 PM


  • NHL
    BUFFALO 3
    MONTREAL 3
    3RD PRD: BUF - DANIEL BRIERE 18 (BRIAN CAMPBELL, JASON POMINVILLE)
    8:37

    Sabres vs. CanadiensJan 20 9:23 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    BUFFALO 0 2 2
    MONTREAL 2 1 3 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: MON - (PP) GUILLAUME LATENDRESSE 10 (TOMAS PLEKANEC, MARK
    STREIT) 8:00
    MON - (PP) SAKU KOIVU 16 (ALEXEI KOVALEV, ANDREI MARKOV)
    19:30
    2ND PRD: MON - FRANCIS BOUILLON 2 (UNASSISTED) 4:49
    BUF - DANIEL BRI

    Jan 20 8:48 PM


  • NHL
    BUFFALO 2
    MONTREAL 3
    2ND PRD: BUF - DEREK ROY 9 (MAXIM AFINOGENOV) 16:11

    Sabres vs. CanadiensJan 20 8:43 PM


  • NHL
    BUFFALO 1
    MONTREAL 3 10:41 LEFT, 2ND PRD

    Sabres vs. CanadiensJan 20 8:25 PM


  • NHL
    BUFFALO 0
    MONTREAL 3
    2ND PRD: MON - FRANCIS BOUILLON 2 (UNASSISTED) 4:49

    Sabres vs. CanadiensJan 20 8:14 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    BUFFALO 0 0
    MONTREAL 2 2 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: MON - (PP) GUILLAUME LATENDRESSE 10 (TOMAS PLEKANEC, MARK
    STREIT) 8:00
    MON - (PP) SAKU KOIVU 16 (ALEXEI KOVALEV, ANDREI MARKOV)
    19:30
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    BUF

    Jan 20 7:50 PM


  • NHL
    BUFFALO 0
    MONTREAL 2
    1ST PRD: MON - (PP) SAKU KOIVU 16 (ALEXEI KOVALEV, ANDREI MARKOV)
    19:30

    Sabres vs. CanadiensJan 20 7:49 PM


  • NHL
    BUFFALO 0
    MONTREAL 1 10:45 LEFT, 1ST PRD

    Sabres vs. CanadiensJan 20 7:27 PM