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MTL@TBL: Postgame

The Canadiens gave up a two-goal lead and lost 5-4 to the Lightning

by Pierre-Antoine Mercier, translated by Dan Braverman @CanadiensMTL / canadiens.com

TAMPA - The Canadiens dropped a 5-4 decision to the Lightning on Saturday night at Amalie Arena.

The game against the Lightning held particular significance for captain Shea Weber, as it was the veteran defenseman's 200th in a Canadiens uniform.

It was also a special night for youngster Jesperi Kotkaniemi, who was making his return to action. His traditional handshakes made their return, as well.

Tweet from @CanadiensMTL: KK est de retour, et on trouve ��a vraiment mint. 🌿KK���s back, and we think that���s really mint.#GoHabsGo pic.twitter.com/W2IHh5G1Wd

Not to be upstaged, Max Domi and Nate Thompson showed off their own handshake during warmups.

Tweet from @CanadiensMTL: Max 🤝 Nate#GoHabsGo pic.twitter.com/OzfahZKl9V

Kotkaniemi celebrated his return by scoring the opening goal just 2:08 into play. The center picked up the puck in the slot and beat Andrei Vasilevskiy up high to make it 1-0 for the visitors.

Tweet from @CanadiensMTL: 🤯🤯🤯#GoHabsGo pic.twitter.com/vDw33SbGgn

It was KK's fourth goal of the campaign.

Max Domi doubled the Canadiens' lead with 10 minutes to go in the opening frame on a rather unusual play. The 24-year-old center got a perfect shot off into the top corner, but the referee didn't signal a goal. After review, it was determined that the puck had indeed crossed the red line to hand the Habs a 2-0 lead.

Tweet from @CanadiensMTL: Mieux vaut tard que jamais. 😅Better late than never.#GoHabsGo pic.twitter.com/YK3ula1l7D

Domi extended his goal-scoring streak to four games with the tally, and his points streak now runs at five games.

For his part, rookie Nick Suzuki earned a helper on Domi's goal, making it a fourth straight game in which he's earned a point.

The Lightning halved the Habs' lead with 59 seconds remaining in the first thanks to Alex Killorn.

The Canadiens dominated the first half of the period, with Tampa only getting its first shot on goal with 7:35 left in the stanza.

Montreal led 20-10 in shots after 20 minutes.

Steven Stamkos made it even just 1:34 into the second when he picked up his own rebound and beat Carey Price to make it a 2-2 game.

The Lightning got their first lead of the night a few minutes after the Stamkos goal when Mitchell Stephens potted his first in the NHL.

Killorn netted his second of the game with eight minutes left in the middle frame two double the lead for the hosts.

The Canadiens would reduce that lead just 13 seconds later.

Defenseman Ben Chiarot jumped on a Brendan Gallagher rebound to make it 4-3. The goal tied Chiarot's career high in a season with five.

Tweet from @CanadiensMTL: Big Ben Chiarot ��gale d��j�� son sommet personnel de buts. 5������Big Ben Chiarot ties his career high in goals.#GoHabsGo pic.twitter.com/BuNeyBIqxl

Tweet from @CanadiensMTL: BIG BEN!!MTL 3 - TBL 4#GoHabsGo pic.twitter.com/4pKkQJzOJK

Center Phillip Danault earned an assist on the goal to extend his points streak to three games, and hit the 30-point mark in the process.

The Canadiens were still leading in shots 30-20 after 40.

Tampa once again made it a two-goal lead 55 seconds into the third period, when forward Anthony Cirelli jumped on a rebound to up the score to 5-3.

Jordan Weal gave the Habs a bit of hope when he lit the lamp with 1:28 left in regulation, but the Canadiens ran out of racetrack.

Tweet from @CanadiensMTL: WEAL!!MTL 4 - 5 TBL#GoHabsGo pic.twitter.com/B9a4VEBFt0

The Habs are back in action on Sunday night against the Florida Panthers at the BB&T Center.

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