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Toronto
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OT
27 SOG
46 SOG
1st2nd3rdOTT
MTL
TOR
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game recap

Canadiens start season with 4-3 OT win in Toronto

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 4:51 AM

NHL.com

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Canadiens start season with 4-3 OT win in Toronto
Montréal Canadiens 4, Toronto Maple Leafs 3

In a battle of remodeled rivals, score one for the Montreal Canadiens.

Josh Gorges' goal with 12.8 seconds remaining in overtime gave the Canadiens a 4-3 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Thursday night in the opener for both teams.

Gorges, whose power-play blast was tipped in by Glen Metropolit with 4:10 remaining to force overtime, picked up a juicy rebound after Vesa Toskala stopped Mike Cammalleri's close-in chance. Gorges lifted it into the net to give the Canadiens their 49th victory in 92 season-openers.

"That's a great way to start the season," Gorges said. "I don't score many goals."

The goal capped a frustrating night for the sellout crowd at the Air Canada Centre, which saw the Leafs outshoot their archrivals 46-27 only to be repeatedly denied by Carey Price.

"He was unbelievable," Gorges said of the third-year goaltender, who's coming off a poor second half and a disappointing playoff showing. "He held us in there when the game could have gotten out of hand."

Added Cammalleri: "Carey stood on his head. He won us the game tonight."

Toronto fell to 34-41-17 in its 92 season-openers, including 22-22-12 at home.

It was an especially tough night for former Canadien Mike Komisarek -- one of eight new Leafs -- who spent 15 minutes of his first game in blue and white in the penalty box; he was there for both of Montreal's power-play goals.

"I think we were the better team tonight, and fell short," said Komisarek, who signed a big free-agent contract with Toronto during the summer. "We didn't get two points. Next time, we find a way to win and get the two points.

"Good start, could have been better, but we'll take the point and take the positive out of it."

Most painful was an elbowing call with 4:46 left in regulation and the Leafs clinging to a one-goal lead. Metropolit got position in front and tipped Gorges' straightaway slap shot behind Toskala to force the overtime.

The pageantry that marks every Leafs home opener quickly gave way to a frantic tempo that saw a pair of scraps before the Canadiens opened the scoring 11:05 into the game.

Komisarek was sitting out a double minor for high sticking when Brian Gionta, one of Montreal's plethora of newcomers, flashed out in front, took a pass from fellow newcomer Cammalleri and snapped the puck past Toskala at 11:05.

Alex Ponikarovsky tied it at 14:27 on the only one of Toronto's 14 first-period shots to elude Price -- who had no chance on his blast from between the circles.

The Canadiens went ahead again 6:38 into the second period on a goal by another newcomer, Travis Moen. The rugged forward tucked the puck past Toskala to give Montreal its second lead. Matt Stajan's tip of Tomas Kaberle's slapper at 10:29 during a 5-on-3 power play tied it at 2-2 after two periods.

The Leafs poured it on in the third and went ahead for the first time on another power-play goal by Stajan, who tapped in a pass from Jason Blake at 9:09.

But the Leafs, who were last in the NHL in penalty-killing last season, couldn't kill the fifth minor of the night to Komisarek and allowed the Canadiens to force OT on Metropolit's tip.

--John Kreiser, NHL

Material from wire services and team media was used in this report


scoring summary
1st Period
11:05
MTL
PPG - Brian Gionta (1) ASST: Mike Cammalleri (1), Tomas Plekanec (1)
1 - 0 MTL
14:27
TOR
Alexei Ponikarovsky (1) ASST: Mikhail Grabovski (1), Niklas Hagman (1)
1 - 1 Tie
2nd Period
06:38
MTL
Travis Moen (1) ASST: Glen Metropolit (1), Georges Laraque (1)
2 - 1 MTL
10:29
TOR
PPG - Matt Stajan (1) ASST: Tomas Kaberle (1), Francois Beauchemin (1)
2 - 2 Tie
3rd Period
09:09
TOR
PPG - Matt Stajan (2) ASST: Jason Blake (1), Viktor Stalberg (1)
3 - 2 TOR
15:50
MTL
PPG - Glen Metropolit (1) ASST: Josh Gorges (1), Paul Mara (1)
3 - 3 Tie
OT Period
04:47
MTL
Josh Gorges (1) ASST: Mike Cammalleri (2), Tomas Plekanec (2)
4 - 3 MTL
penalty summary
1st Period
01:51
TOR
Colton Orr  Fighting (maj) against  Georges Laraque
01:51
MTL
Georges Laraque  Fighting (maj) against  Colton Orr
10:55
TOR
Jay Rosehill  Fighting (maj) against  Travis Moen
10:55
MTL
Travis Moen  Fighting (maj) against  Jay Rosehill
11:01
TOR
Mike Komisarek  Hi stick - double minor against  Scott Gomez
2nd Period
08:42
MTL
Matt D'Agostini  Hooking against  Niklas Hagman
10:09
MTL
Paul Mara  Holding against  Lee Stempniak
14:56
TOR
Garnet Exelby  Interference against  Maxim Lapierre
16:47
TOR
Mike Komisarek  Cross checking against  Andrei Kostitsyn
16:47
MTL
Andrei Kostitsyn  Slashing against  Mike Komisarek
3rd Period
05:56
TOR
Mike Komisarek  Roughing against  Scott Gomez
05:56
MTL
Scott Gomez  Roughing against  Mike Komisarek
08:56
MTL
Travis Moen  Interference on goalkeeper against  Vesa Toskala
08:56
MTL
Travis Moen  Fighting (maj) against  Mike Komisarek
08:56
TOR
Mike Komisarek  Fighting (maj) against  Travis Moen
15:14
TOR
Mike Komisarek  Elbowing against  Mike Cammalleri
OT Period
NONE
goalie stats
Carey Price
SA: 46TOI: 64:31
Saves: 43EV: 37 - 38
PIM: 0PP: 5 - 7
SV%: .935SH: 1 - 1
Vesa Toskala
SA: 27TOI: 64:30
Saves: 23EV: 22 - 24
PIM: 0PP: 1 - 3
SV%: .852SH: 0 - 0