MONTREAL - Here are a few key storylines from Wednesday night's 4-1 loss to the Chicago Blackhawks at the Bell Centre.
Straight to the point
Head coach Claude Julien didn't like anything about the way his group performed against Chicago.
During his postgame press conference, the veteran bench boss expressed his dismay with the overall effort from start to finish.
"We weren't in the game at all. It's as simple as that. They're a team with good sticks. We made that clear before the game, and we weren't in it," said Julien, after watching his players give the puck away 24 times. "We were losing battles, we didn't get to loose pucks, and we made bad decisions. We didn't deserve that game."
Julien went on to classify the contest as "the worst game we've played, probably in the last 10," which tells you everything you need to know about his mood before boarding the team charter to Philadelphia for Thursday night's game against the Flyers.
"It happens from time to time, but it doesn't mean that it's acceptable and I accept it. I'm extremely disappointed with our performance," said Julien. "We just weren't there. It's not always the same guys, but we had players who weren't on point. That really snowballed."
With the Canadiens down by a goal in the second period, Max Domi took a roughing penalty that ultimately proved costly.
Just 35 seconds after taking a seat in the box, Alex DeBrincat scored to restore Chicago's two-goal advantage.
As a result, Julien proceeded to bench Domi for the remainder of the frame.
"I did what I had to do. It's as simple as that," said Julien, who was displeased with Domi's conduct at such a critical point in the contest. "When you take a bad penalty like that, there are consequences."
Video: Max Domi on taking a critical penalty
In retrospect, Domi knows full well that he made a key mistake.
"I certainly wasn't trying to take a penalty. I watched the replay, and it's a penalty. That's how it goes. It's unfortunate they scored on that," explained Domi. "Obviously, we can't do that, especially with the situation we're in right now. It's the coaches' decision [to bench me]. Obviously, I can't do that."
Another loss for Lindgren
Goaltender Charlie Lindgren is still seeking his first win of the season.
The 26-year-old Lakeville, MN native surrendered four goals on 28 shots against Chicago, which left a bitter taste in his mouth.
"It's obviously never fun to lose. I'm frustrated, just like everyone else in this dressing room," said Lindgren. "It's three games in a row where I've lost. Hopefully I turn it around my next shot."
Video: Charlie Lindgren on his performance against Chicago
Lindgren gave up one of the goals under some rather unusual circumstances. He was actually without his stick and blocker on DeBrincat's tally.
So why wasn't the play stopped at any point in time before the Blackhawks' winger put the puck home?
"The explanation isn't complicated," said Julien. "The only time the referees can blow the whistle is when a goalie loses his mask. Whatever happened, happened. We didn't get the puck out. It's too bad, but that's the rule. And maybe it's a rule they should look at more closely at some point. Not just for our goaltender, but for every goaltender. The mask is important, but so is the glove. Those three pieces of equipment are important, especially when a guy's taking a one-timer from the slot. That's dangerous."
It was definitely a unique situation for the St. Cloud State University product to deal with at the time.
"It's weird to play without a piece of your equipment, but that's the game," said Lindgren. "From my perspective, I just had to play like I still had my blocker on. I think I put my hand behind my back so I didn't get hit there. I just tried to keep on playing and unfortunately they scored."