MONTREAL - Gustav Nyquist scored on a rebound with 28 seconds left in overtime to give the Detroit Red Wings a 2-1 win over the Montreal Canadiens in the first post-Olympic game for both clubs on Wednesday night.
A team coached by Detroit's Mike Babcock, who was Canada's Olympic bench boss, had not allowed a goal since Lauris Darzins got one at 15:41 of the first period of Canada's 2-1 win over Latvia in the quarter-finals in Sochi.
Todd Bertuzzi scored in the first period for Detroit (27-20-12).
The Red Wings checkers threw a blanket over Montreal much as Canada did at the Olympics and the Bell Centre crowd booed as the Canadiens tested Jimmy Howard only twice in the second period. Detroit had a 30-20 shot advantage overall.
But they were on their feet as Gionta collected a puck at the side of the net in a scramble and backhanded the tying goal into a top corner.
Two players who used the Olympic break to heal wounds combined for the opening goal as Johan Franzen, back from a concussion, fed Bertuzzi at the edge of the crease for a power-play goal 14:01 into the game. Bertuzzi had missed eight games with an upper-body problem.
The goal came after Canadian Olympian P.K. Subban was called for roughing.
Budaj had been slated to start in goal for Montreal even before Canadian Olympian Carey Price injured his left leg during the team's game-day skate. He is to start again when Montreal visits Pittsburgh on Thursday night.
The 21,273 at the Bell Centre gave rousing ovation to 12 members of Canadian men's and women's hockey gold medallist teams from the Sochi Olympics in a pre-game ceremony.
The biggest cheers went to Marie-Philip Poulin, who had two goals in the women's final, and to Babcock and Canadiens players Price and Subban.
Notes: Canadiens Alex Galchenyuk and Travis Moen returned from injuries, but Michael Bournival and Brandon Prust remain sidelined. Goaltender Dustin Tokarski was recalled from AHL Hamilton. . . The Red Wings played the 3,000th road game of their history. They are (1,085-1,439-475) away from Detroit.
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