for this game

Halak, Plekanec key Canadiens past Canucks

Feb 25, 2009 - 4:41 AM
MONTREAL (Ticker) -- Jaroslav Halak turned aside all 34 shots he faced and Tomas Plekanec recorded a goal and an assist as Montreal Canadiens snapped the Vancouver Canucks' four-game winning streak with a 3-0 triumph on Tuesday.

All-Star defenseman Andrei Markov netted a power-play goal and Maxim Lapierre added an empty-net goal for Montreal, which won its second straight after posting a 3-11-1 mark in its previous 15 games.

Halak turned aside eight shots in the first period and 13 in both the second and third to secure his first blanking of the season and fourth career.

"Jaroslav has been waiting for a long time for this," Montreal coach Guy Carbonneau said. "We hope he takes the bull by the horns and we win six or seven in a row."

"(Halak) played outstanding tonight and the two differences in tonight's game was the goaltending and the special teams," All-Star defenseman Mike Komisarek said. "Halak made some tremendous saves and kept us in the game and gave us a chance to win tonight."

The netminder received a helping hand with 6 1/2 minutes remaining in the third, as a shot squeezed between his pads and trickled toward the goal line before defenseman Patrice Brisebois cleared the puck away.

"When I looked at the replay, I saw the puck rolling in really slowly," Halak said. "But he (Brisebois) got it out, so I was really happy."

Captain Roberto Luongo finished with 14 saves for Vancouver, which fell to 8-2-0 in its last 10 games.

"It was an uneventful night for me," Luongo said. "I was bored. The guys played hard and spent most of the game in the other zone."

"We had enough chances, breakaways and power plays," veteran Mats Sundin said. "It seems like in this league if you don't capitalize on chances like 5-on-3s and a lot of power plays and a couple of breakaways, it seems like it will come back and haunt you and that's what happened tonight."

Plekanec opened the scoring with 78 seconds remaining in the first period.

After killing off a 5-on-3 power play, the Canadiens struck quickly as captain Saku Koivu stripped the puck from Vancouver's Kyle Wellwood and fed Plekanec, who just returned to the ice after serving his penalty.

Plekanec skated in on Luongo and wristed the puck past the netminder for his 16th goal of the season.

"It was the first period," Luongo said of when the tide turned in the contest.

"We had 5-on-3 for two minutes and unfortunately we didn't score. Then, they got the their goal on the breakaway and that was it - it was a real momentum shifter."

Koivu was credited with an assist for his 623rd point, tying him with Elmer Lach for 10th place in franchise history.

Halak preserved the one-goal lead midway through the second period by stopping Pavol Demitra on a breakaway.

Markov doubled the advantage with 3:52 remaining in the second after accepting a cross-crease feed from Plekanec and tapping it inside the left goalpost for his eighth tally of the campaign.

"I think they might have had three chances at 5-on-5 the whole game, and they had a couple on the power play, so they didn't generate much," Vancouver coach Alain Vigneault said.

"We generated quite a few, but we weren't able to score. Our goaltender has done that many times to other teams, but tonight we had it done to us."








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    VANCOUVER 0 0 0 0
    MONTREAL 1 1 1 3 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: MON - TOMAS PLEKANEC 16 (SAKU KOIVU) 18:42
    2ND PRD: MON - (PP) ANDREI MARKOV 8 (TOMAS PLEKANEC, ALEXEI KOVALEV)
    16:08
    3RD PRD: MON - (EN) MAXIM LAPIERRE 11 (CHRIS HIGGINS, ROMAN HAMRLIK)
    19:54
    POWER-PLAY CONVERSIONS

    Feb 24 10:04 PM


  • NHL
    VANCOUVER 0
    MONTREAL 3
    3RD PRD: MON - (EN) MAXIM LAPIERRE 11 (CHRIS HIGGINS, ROMAN HAMRLIK)
    19:54

    Canucks 0, Canadiens 3  3rd - 0:06Feb 24 10:03 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    VANCOUVER 0 0 0
    MONTREAL 1 1 2 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: MON - TOMAS PLEKANEC 16 (SAKU KOIVU) 18:42
    2ND PRD: MON - (PP) ANDREI MARKOV 8 (TOMAS PLEKANEC, ALEXEI KOVALEV)
    16:08
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    VAN 8 13

    Feb 24 9:13 PM


  • NHL
    VANCOUVER 0
    MONTREAL 2
    2ND PRD: MON - (PP) ANDREI MARKOV 8 (TOMAS PLEKANEC, ALEXEI KOVALEV)
    16:08

    Canucks 0, Canadiens 2  2nd - 3:52Feb 24 9:10 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    VANCOUVER 0 0
    MONTREAL 1 1 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: MON - TOMAS PLEKANEC 16 (SAKU KOIVU) 18:42
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    VAN 8 8
    MON 6 6
    GOALIES: VAN - ROBERTO LUONGO
    MON - JAROSLAV

    Feb 24 8:19 PM


  • NHL
    VANCOUVER 0
    MONTREAL 1
    1ST PRD: MON - TOMAS PLEKANEC 16 (SAKU KOIVU) 18:42

    Canucks 0, Canadiens 1  1st - 1:18Feb 24 8:16 PM