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Montréal
Canadiens
42-31-9
Toronto
Maple Leafs
41-33-8

game recap

Montréal Canadiens 5, Toronto Maple Leafs 4 FINAL

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 4:51 AM

Associated Press

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Montréal Canadiens 5, Toronto Maple Leafs 4 FINAL
Montréal Canadiens 5, Toronto Maple Leafs 4

TORONTO (AP) - Mike Ribeiro made up for three missed scoring chances.

Ribeiro scored with 4:27 left to help the Montreal Canadiens beat the Toronto Maple Leafs 5-4 on Saturday night for their third straight road victory of the season and first 3-0-0 start in 27 years.

``I was 1-for-4 on scoring chances,'' Ribeiro said. ``It's about time I finally scored. ... We showed some character tonight, we lost the lead twice in the game and came back. And (captain) Saku (Koivu) really showed why he's a leader.''

Ribeiro, standing alone beside the net, tapped in a cross-ice pass from defenseman Andrei Markov for the winner.

``It was an exciting game,'' Montreal coach Claude Julien said. ``We had a lot of mental errors, we looked tired at times. But we found a way to come back and score some big goals. That showed character and determination.''

Koivu set up the tying goal with 6:56 remaining, skating around the Leafs' zone at will before taking a shot that was stopped by Ed Belfour, only for Steve Begin to pop in the rebound.

``It's something to build on,'' Koivu said. ``We have a young team and a lot of rookies. For us to win games late is really something for our confidence. We're not quitting. We're not playing our best but we're finding a way.''

Sheldon Souray, Alexander Perezhogin and Niklas Sundstrom also scored for the Canadiens in only their third victory at Air Canada Centre. Koivu and Alexei Kovalev added two assists apiece for Montreal, which last opened with three wins in 1978-79.

Toronto defensemen Aki Berg and Wade Belak were on the ice for the tying and winning goals.

``Our defensive zone coverage cost us the other night (against Ottawa) and it cost us tonight,'' Maple Leafs coach Pat Quinn said. ``It's an area that clearly we're not handling very well right now. We were losing battles for loose pucks, we weren't strong in our end.''

The Canadiens gave up a 3-2 lead in the third period on goals by Matt Stajan and Nik Antropov and were staring at their first defeat of the season before Begin and Ribeiro scored 2:29 apart to take two points from the Maple Leafs.

Alexander Steen scored his first NHL goal for Toronto, and Tie Domi also scored for the Maple Leafs, playing without injured captain Mats Sundin (fractured orbital bone).

Notes: Koivu played in his 500th career game. ... The Canadiens outshot Toronto 25-20. ... Montreal was 2-for-4 on the power play, while Toronto was 1-for-6.

scoring summary
1st Period
NONE
2nd Period
08:57
MTL
PPG - Alexander Perezhogin (2) ASST: Saku Koivu (2), Alex Kovalev (3)
1 - 0 MTL
11:29
TOR
Alexander Steen (1) ASST: NONE
1 - 1 Tie
12:39
TOR
Tie Domi (1) ASST: Chad Kilger (1), Kyle Wellwood (1)
2 - 1 TOR
13:16
MTL
Niklas Sundstrom (1) ASST: Radek Bonk (2), Jan Bulis (1)
2 - 2 Tie
14:50
MTL
PPG - Sheldon Souray (1) ASST: Alex Kovalev (4), Mark Streit (1)
3 - 2 MTL
3rd Period
02:27
TOR
PPG - Matt Stajan (1) ASST: Eric Lindros (1), Ken Klee (1)
3 - 3 Tie
10:38
TOR
Nik Antropov (1) ASST: Eric Lindros (2)
4 - 3 TOR
13:04
MTL
Steve Begin (1) ASST: Saku Koivu (3)
4 - 4 Tie
15:33
MTL
Mike Ribeiro (1) ASST: Andrei Markov (1), Chris Higgins (1)
5 - 4 MTL
penalty summary
1st Period
01:29
MTL
Radek Bonk  Tripping against  Jason Allison
02:57
MTL
Sheldon Souray  Delaying Game-Puck over glass
10:52
TOR
Alexei Ponikarovsky  Hi-sticking against  Craig Rivet
10:52
TOR
Alexei Ponikarovsky  Hi-sticking against  Craig Rivet
2nd Period
02:51
MTL
Mike Ribeiro  Tripping against  Tie Domi
04:38
MTL
Francis Bouillon  Hooking against  Darcy Tucker
07:21
TOR
Aki Berg  Tripping against  Chris Higgins
14:22
TOR
Tomas Kaberle  Hooking against  Chris Higgins
15:41
MTL
Radek Bonk  Hooking against  Kyle Wellwood
3rd Period
01:18
MTL
Mike Ribeiro  Too many men/ice - bench
goalie stats
Jose Theodore
SA: 20TOI: 60:00
Saves: 16EV: 13 - 16
PIM: 0PP: 3 - 4
SV%: .800SH: 0 - 0
Ed Belfour
SA: 25TOI: 59:17
Saves: 20EV: 17 - 20
PIM: 0PP: 1 - 3
SV%: .800SH: 2 - 2