Canadiens
Thrashers
3 - 2 Final - 2OT
  for this game

Kostitsyn, Koivu lead Canadiens to another road win

Jan 18, 2008 - 4:44 AM
ATLANTA (Ticker) -- The third time in a shootout against the Atlanta Thrashers proved to be a charm for the Montreal Canadiens.

Andrei Kostitsyn and captain Saku Koivu scored in the bonus format to give the Canadiens a 3-2 triumph over the Thrashers on Thursday.

Kostitsyn and Michael Ryder tallied in regulation and Cristobal Huet made 22 saves for Montreal, which lost its previous two meetings with Atlanta this season - both in a shootout.

"(Atlanta) has good players in the shootout," Huet said. "It was good for us to see us score. We're very happy to win this game."

After Vyacheslav Kozlov shot wide on the Thrashers' first attempt, Kostitsyn made a nice deke and slid the puck between goaltender Kari Lehtonen's pads to give the Canadiens the edge.

Huet denied Marian Hossa's try in the second round before Koivu sealed the victory, getting enough on his shot to have it get past Lehtonen after the Finn got a piece of it.

"I don't think you're ever too confident when you go into a shootout," Koivu said. "I know Kari from Finnish training camp. He's a big guy and tough to beat. I just wanted to go and shoot the puck, and it went through."

The win gave Montreal a 16-7-3 mark on the road, tying San Jose for the most victories away from home this season.

"Starting at the beginning of the season, we seem to be a lot more comfortable on the road," said Canadiens coach Guy Carbonneau, whose team is just 8-7-5 at home. "On the road, you have less distractions. I think the last month and a half, we really jelled well as a team. Now we need to translate that to winning at home more as the season continues."

Hossa opened the scoring with a power-play tally late in the first period.

With Montreal defenseman Francis Bouillon in the penalty box for interference, Hossa's cross-crease pass attempt from below the right faceoff circle bounced off the right arm of Huet and into net with 71 seconds remaining to give Atlanta a 1-0 lead.

It was the fourth goal in the last two games and 20th of the season for the 29-year-old Hossa, who recorded his seventh career hat trick against the Detroit Red Wings on Tuesday. The All-Star has reached the 20-goal plateau each of the last eight seasons.

Former Canadien Mark Recchi recorded an assist on the play, giving him 19 points in 19 games with the Thrashers since being claimed off waivers from the Pittsburgh Penguins on December 8.

Kostitsyn drew the Canadiens even with a fantastic individual effort 5:24 into the second period.

The 22-year-old native of Belarus received the puck from Tomas Plekanec in the neutral zone before powering down the ice. Kostitsyn skated between defensemen Ken Klee and Alexei Zhitnik in the slot before putting a backhander over Lehtonen's left shoulder to tie the contest at 1-1.

Montreal took a brief lead at 6:02 of the third, when Guillaume Latendresse found Ryder with a pretty backhand pass from the right circle. From the slot, Ryder lofted the puck over the shoulder of Lehtonen for his seventh goal of the season.

But Atlanta answered exactly three minutes later thanks to a miscue by Huet.

The goaltender played the puck in the left corner and attempted to leave it for defenseman Roman Hamrlik. But Eric Perrin sneaked to grab it and fed a wide-open Pascal Dupuis, who wristed the puck into a vacant net at 9:02 to knot the game at 2-2.

"It was just a misplay by me," Huet said. "I tried to stop the puck. It's a bad break for us. It shouldn't have happened."

"I thought he was going to get it to Hamrlik quicker," Perrin said. "He got stuck in no man's land."

Huet recovered from the embarrassing play, stopping five shots in overtime and denying a 2-on-1 rush by Hossa and fellow All-Star Ilya Kovalchuk before thwarting both of Atlanta's shootout chances.

"I think it was a good opportunity for me to really step up and make sure we didn't get beat in the shootout," the French netminder said. "I definitely felt I owed the team something after the two goals. It was a good chance to redeem myself."

Lehtonen turned aside 27 shots for Atlanta, which had won two straight and fell to 5-3 in shootouts.

Despite the loss, the Thrashers picked up one point to move ahead of the Carolina Hurricanes for first place in the Southeast Division. Carolina dropped a 5-1 decision at Ottawa on Thursday.

Atlanta (23-22-3) has made a nice turnaround since losing its first six contests of the season but has yet to get two games over the .500 mark.

"That's something we talked about," Perrin said. "We want to take the next step. The mind set isn't great, even though we got one point."

"Wins are hard to come by," Thrashers coach Don Waddell added. "We know that, and we've really stressed in these close games to try to come out of there with two points. It's good that the players aren't satisfied with just getting one point. I'm glad to hear that."








  • ------------------------------------------------
    Montreal
    0 1 1 0 (2) --3
    Atlanta 1 0 1 0 (0) --2
    ------------------------------------------------

    FIRST PERIOD -- Scoring: 1, Atlanta, Marian Hossa 20 (power play) (Mark
    Recchi, Eric Perrin)18:49. Penalties: M Ryder, Mon (slashing), 9:19;
    M Recchi, Atl (hooking), 10:29; K Doell, Atl (tripping), 15:05; F
    Bou

    Jan 17 9:42 PM


  • ------------------------------------------------
    Montreal
    0 1 1 0 (2) --3
    Atlanta 1 0 1 0 (0) --2
    ------------------------------------------------

    FIRST PERIOD -- Scoring: 1, Atlanta, Marian Hossa 20 (power play) (Mark
    Recchi, Eric Perrin)18:49. Penalties: M Ryder, Mon (slashing), 9:19;
    M Recchi, Atl (hooking), 10:29; K Doell, Atl (tripping), 15:05; F
    Bou

    Canadiens vs. ThrashersJan 17 9:42 PM


  • NHL
    END OF OT 1ST 2ND 3RD OT TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    MONTREAL 0 1 1 0 2
    ATLANTA 1 0 1 0 2 END OF OT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ATL - (PP) MARIAN HOSSA 20 (MARK RECCHI, ERIC PERRIN) 18:49
    2ND PRD: MON - ANDREI KOSTITSYN 12 (TOMAS PLEKANEC, ANDREI MARKOV)
    5:24
    3RD PRD: MON - MICHAEL RYDER 7 (GUILLAUME LAT

    Jan 17 9:37 PM
  • 152
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    RUWTbot Added 70 roots (Overtime)

    Canadiens vs. ThrashersJan 17 9:33 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 3RD GOING INTO OT
    1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    MONTREAL 0 1 1 2
    ATLANTA 1 0 1 2 GOING INTO OT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ATL - (PP) MARIAN HOSSA 20 (MARK RECCHI, ERIC PERRIN) 18:49
    2ND PRD: MON - ANDREI KOSTITSYN 12 (TOMAS PLEKANEC, ANDREI MARKOV)
    5:24
    3RD PRD: MON - MICHAEL RYDER 7 (GUILLAUME LATENDRESSE, BRYAN
    SMOLINS

    Jan 17 9:29 PM
  • 82
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    RUWTbot Added 72 roots (Close Finish)

    Canadiens vs. ThrashersJan 17 9:23 PM


  • NHL
    MONTREAL 2
    ATLANTA 2
    3RD PRD: ATL - PASCAL DUPUIS 9 (ERIC PERRIN) 9:02

    Canadiens vs. ThrashersJan 17 9:11 PM


  • NHL
    MONTREAL 2
    ATLANTA 1
    3RD PRD: MON - MICHAEL RYDER 7 (GUILLAUME LATENDRESSE, BRYAN
    SMOLINSKI) 6:02

    Canadiens vs. ThrashersJan 17 9:05 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    MONTREAL 0 1 1
    ATLANTA 1 0 1 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ATL - (PP) MARIAN HOSSA 20 (MARK RECCHI, ERIC PERRIN) 18:49
    2ND PRD: MON - ANDREI KOSTITSYN 12 (TOMAS PLEKANEC, ANDREI MARKOV)
    5:24
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    MON

    Jan 17 8:37 PM
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    Canadiens vs. ThrashersJan 17 8:19 PM


  • NHL
    MONTREAL 1
    ATLANTA 1
    2ND PRD: MON - ANDREI KOSTITSYN 12 (TOMAS PLEKANEC, ANDREI MARKOV)
    5:24

    Canadiens vs. ThrashersJan 17 8:09 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    MONTREAL 0 0
    ATLANTA 1 1 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: ATL - (PP) MARIAN HOSSA 20 (MARK RECCHI, ERIC PERRIN) 18:49
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    MON 6 6
    ATL 7 7
    GOALIES: MON - CRISTOBAL HUE

    Jan 17 7:42 PM


  • NHL
    MONTREAL 0
    ATLANTA 1
    1ST PRD: ATL - (PP) MARIAN HOSSA 20 (MARK RECCHI, ERIC PERRIN) 18:49

    Canadiens vs. ThrashersJan 17 7:41 PM
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    metsfan31 Added 5 roots

    Canadiens vs. ThrashersJan 17 12:11 PM