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CGY@MTL: Game Recap

Tyler Toffoli scored twice to lead the Canadiens to a huge win over the Flames

by Matt Cudzinowski @CanadiensMTL /

MONTREAL - The Canadiens edged the Flames 2-1 on Friday night at the Bell Centre.

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The contest marked defenseman Ben Chiarot's return to the lineup after missing 15 games following surgery to repair a fractured hand.

Chiarot, who hadn't played since March 10 in Vancouver, was paired with captain Shea Weber.

Tweet from @CanadiensMTL: Le grand retour de Big Ben! 💪Big Ben's big return!#GoHabsGo

Interestingly enough, the encounter also marked the 400th game of Chiarot's NHL career.

The 29-year-old Hamilton, ON native appeared in 305 games with Winnipeg before he signed a three-year contract with Montreal in July 2019.

Tweet from @CanadiensMTL: 4������0������0������ 👏Bravo, Ben! #GoHabsGo

There were no goals to report in the opening frame, but the Flames outshot the Canadiens by a 13-6 margin.

Dominique Ducharme's troops came close to getting on the board late in the period, but goaltender Jacob Markstrom made this highlight-reel stop on right-winger Josh Anderson.

Tweet from @NHLFlames: "No." - Jacob Markstrom

It was forward Tyler Toffoli who finally opened the scoring at the 9:32 mark of the second period with his team-leading 20th goal of the season.

Young gun Nick Suzuki fed the 28-year-old sniper with a perfect feed from behind the goal line, and Toffoli made no mistake with a top-corner shot from the slot that evaded Markstrom.

Tweet from @CanadiensMTL: Toffoli a son 2������0������e but de la saison!Toffoli gets his 20th!#GoHabsGo

Toffoli went six straight games without a tally before reaching the 20-goal plateau for the fifth time in his NHL career.

Defenseman Brett Kulak also picked up an assist on the play.

The Canadiens led 1-0 after 40 minutes, but they were still being outshot 21-14.

It's safe to say that goaltender Jake Allen was delivering the goods again for the home side.

Tweet from @CanadiensMTL: 21 arr��ts apr��s 40 minutes. 🐍21 saves for Jake so far.#GoHabsGo

The Flames tied things up at the 6:30 mark of the third period courtesy of centreman Elias Lindholm.

The 26-year-old Swede was on his knees when he fired a backhander that deflected off Chiarot and past Allen for his 12th goal of the year.

Tweet from @NHLFlames: Just like he drew it up.

Lindholm extended his point streak to five straight games on the play, and the assists were credited to Johnny Gaudreau and Matthew Tkachuk.

Toffoli struck again with 4:15 remaining in regulation to give the Canadiens a 2-1 lead.

The Scarborough, ON native tipped a chip pass from behind the net by Joel Armia past Markstrom.

Tweet from @CanadiensMTL: MERCI TOFFOLI!#GoHabsGo

It was Toffoli's second goal of the contest and his 21st of the season.

Suzuki collected his second assist of the night on the play.

That's the way this one ended.

Allen finished the game with 28 saves to register his seventh win of the season.

Up next for the Canadiens is a matchup against the Ottawa Senators on Saturday afternoon at the Bell Centre. Puck drop is scheduled for 4:00 p.m. ET.

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