for this game

Hurricanes' power play spoils Canadiens' home opener

Oct 14, 2007 - 2:57 AM
By Mark Lidbetter PA Sportsticker Contributing Writer

MONTREAL (Ticker) -- The Carolina Hurrianes blew into Montreal with a little payback on their minds and got it.

Cory Stillman and Matt Cullen scored power play goals as the Hurricanes skated to a 3-1 victory over the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday night at the Bell Centre.

The Canadiens, who were playing their first home game, defeated the Hurricanes, 3-2, in overtime on October 3, ruining Carolina's 10th-anniversary home opener.

Cullen, who was acquired in the offseason from the New York Rangers, netted the game-winner with just 33 seconds left in the second period. A member of Carolina's Stanley Cup championship team in 2006, Cullen took a nice centering feed from Erik Cole in the slot and blasted the puck past goaltender Cristobal Huet for his third goal of the season and a 2-1 edge.

"Colesie made a really nice pass and found me open in the slot, and I was able to put it in," Cullen said. "Everyone is contributing. We're getting even-strength goals, power-play goals, and that's important for us to be successful."

Chad LaRose added an empty-net goal - his first of the season - with 22 seconds remaining to seal the win.

Montreal struck on its first shot of the contest when Chris Higgins redirected a shot by captain Saku Koivu just inside the right goalpost with his back to netminder Cam Ward, giving the Canadiens a 1-0 edge just 72 seconds into the opening period.

It was one of only eight shots the Canadiens would record over the first 40 minutes of play.

"It seemed we were always one stick away. (Carolina) always seemed to get that stick in the way at the last second," Higgins said. "We got in the penalty trouble in the first and second. We weren't playing good hockey in those periods, we were slow, they were beating us to all of the pucks and we were trying to be too cute, and we're not a talented-enough team to be making those cute plays."

The Hurricanes pulled even with 4:08 to go in the period, taking advantage of a 5-on-3 power play. After Huet failed to gain control of a loose puck in the crease, Stillman banged it in from the right side of the net for his second goal of the season.

Ward made 23 saves and Justin Williams recorded two assists for the Hurricanes, who have won three straight.

"I thought our guys responded well, especially after that first goal," Ward said. "If there were any rebounds, the guys did an excellent job of getting back for them. We played extremely well, and I think it would have been a whole different score if it wasn't for the outstanding play of Cristobal Huet."

Huet turned aside 35 shots for Montreal.

"Their transition game is very good," Huet said. "They are a very dangerous team, but we didn't play the way we wanted to play. They threw lot of pucks at me and I felt my game was pretty good."

Carolina coach Peter Laviolette credited the work ethic of his team for its early-season success.

"These games are always scary when you do all the right things through two periods and the game is tied or still close," he said.

Montreal's lack of offensive pressure throughout the most of the game was summed up by coach Guy Carbonneau.

"We had a lack of concentration against a good team like the Hurricanes," he said. "We played 10 minutes of the game and then we lapsed into individual play. Ward was excellent, but we made some bad decisions following (defenseman Mathieu Dandenault's penalty that led to Stillman's goal)."








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    CAROLINA 1 1 1 3
    MONTREAL 1 0 0 1 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: MON - CHRIS HIGGINS 1 (SAKU KOIVU) 1:12
    CAR - (PP) CORY STILLMAN 2 (ROD BRIND'AMOUR, ERIC STAAL)
    15:52
    2ND PRD: CAR - (PP) MATT CULLEN 3 (ERIK COLE, JUSTIN WILLIAMS) 19:26
    3RD PRD: CAR - (EN) CHAD LAROSE 1 (JUSTIN WI

    Oct 13 9:37 PM


  • NHL
    CAROLINA 3
    MONTREAL 1
    3RD PRD: CAR - (EN) CHAD LAROSE 1 (JUSTIN WILLIAMS) 19:44

    Hurricanes vs. CanadiensOct 13 9:37 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    CAROLINA 1 1 2
    MONTREAL 1 0 1 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: MON - CHRIS HIGGINS 1 (SAKU KOIVU) 1:12
    CAR - (PP) CORY STILLMAN 2 (ROD BRIND'AMOUR, ERIC STAAL)
    15:52
    2ND PRD: CAR - (PP) MATT CULLEN 3 (ERIK COLE, JUSTIN WILLIAMS) 19:26
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND

    Oct 13 8:46 PM


  • NHL
    CAROLINA 2
    MONTREAL 1
    2ND PRD: CAR - (PP) MATT CULLEN 3 (ERIK COLE, JUSTIN WILLIAMS) 19:26

    Hurricanes vs. CanadiensOct 13 8:46 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    CAROLINA 1 1
    MONTREAL 1 1 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: MON - CHRIS HIGGINS 1 (SAKU KOIVU) 1:12
    CAR - (PP) CORY STILLMAN 2 (ROD BRIND'AMOUR, ERIC STAAL)
    15:52
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    CAR 13 13
    MON 4

    Oct 13 7:51 PM


  • NHL
    CAROLINA 1
    MONTREAL 1
    1ST PRD: CAR - (PP) CORY STILLMAN 2 (ROD BRIND'AMOUR, ERIC STAAL)
    15:52

    Hurricanes vs. CanadiensOct 13 7:46 PM


  • NHL
    CAROLINA 0
    MONTREAL 1
    1ST PRD: MON - CHRIS HIGGINS 1 (SAKU KOIVU) 1:12

    Hurricanes vs. CanadiensOct 13 7:19 PM
  • 10
    roots
    mdsteele47 Added 5 roots

    Hurricanes vs. CanadiensOct 13 1:58 PM
  • 5
    roots
    six4three Added 5 roots

    Hurricanes vs. CanadiensOct 13 10:25 AM