MONTREAL – After 21 games with the Habs, Lars Eller
finally found his way back to where he feels most comfortable: the scoresheet.
While he could have done without the wait, Eller was happy to finally see his first goal of his Canadiens career make its way past Jonathan Bernier in the second period. Despite his claims that the tally didn’t lift any imaginary primates off his back, the 21-year-old definitely seemed a little lighter in the room after the win.
“I didn’t think much about it. I just hope it doesn’t take another 20 to score the next one,” he laughed. “It’s nice to get that first one and it’s a little bit of a relief but we got the two points too, so it was very satisfying. It was good to get it over with.
“When the crowd supports you like that, you don’t get a much better feeling,” described Eller. “I haven’t had 22,000 people yelling when I’ve scored before, so it was nice.”
Scoring his first goal as a Hab also meant the rookie forward got to enjoy his first celebration with his new team.
“He was looking up to the hockey Gods afterwards,” joked Michael Cammalleri. “Good for him to get it. It’s well-earned by him and it’s nice to see. Hopefully now the floodgates will open up for him.”
Cammalleri’s not the only one hoping Eller’s goal was just the first of many with the Canadiens, but the Danish winger also knows his play is about more than just filling the net.
“There are a lot of things that are more important in my game than scoring goals. It’s not the first priority, but when our line does score, it’s great,” offered Eller, who earned second-star status for his night’s work. “I’m contributing in other ways, but it was nice to get a goal and get the win. I’ve been feeling that my game has been going the right way and I knew it was going to come sooner or later if I kept doing little things right and tonight, it happened.”
Though some of the more seasoned vets on the team may give the rookie winger a lovingly hard time off the ice, they couldn’t hide their pride at seeing the newcomer succeed on it on Wednesday night.
“He’s a great kid and he’s going to be good, there’s no question about it,” professed Scott Gomez
of the 2007 first-round draft pick. “He got his first one and you can just tell by the bench’s reaction that everyone loves the guy and we were all happy for him. You watch, he’s going to be a special player, there’s no question.”Shauna Denis is a writer for canadiens.com.
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