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The Official Site of the Montréal Canadiens

Scary good

Habs win seventh in a row to end October ranked first overall at 8-0-1

by Steven Nechay @CanadiensMTL /

MONTREAL -- Once again at Halloween, the Habs have become the scariest team in the NHL.

Since 2014, the Canadiens have haunted the rest of the league to a 26-4-2 record during October.

And while the club has enjoyed another strong start to the year after wrapping up the month at 8-0-1, the bad news for the other 29 teams is that more frights may be on their way.

"I'm feeling pretty good, but I'm not content by any means," shared Carey Price postgame, after being named the night's first star on the heels of a brilliant 37-save effort. "The key to long term success is realizing that there's a lot more work ahead."

While Price may rank his 5-0-0 record, 1.40 goals against average, and 0.954 save percentage as 'pretty good', opposing skaters might instead argue that he's already a nightmare to face.

Just ask the teammates whose sticks he torments at the practice rink.

"It's tough to score on him, even at practice," cracked Alexander Radulov, who nevertheless had no trouble helping solve Leafs goaltender Frederik Andersen, picking up assists on both Habs goals, including a beauty to set up new linemate Alex Galchenyuk in the second. "Carey and Al [Montoya] both work really hard at practice, and that's what gets us going. When it's that hard to score at practice, you're ready to face any goaltender in the league."Video: TOR@MTL: Galchenyuk one-times Radulov's feed

"I knew that he was a great goaltender [before I arrived in Montreal], and it's good that last year is behind him," continued Radulov. "We just have to help him see every shot and make that first stop. It feels good when you have Carey behind you."

Indeed, the Russian winger held up his end of the bargain on Saturday, notably filing a solid defensive effort -- including three hits and a blocked shot -- to go along with his two-point night up front.

"He gets his body in there and is able to spin off guys to make it tough to get the puck back," explained Shea Weber, who scored the game-winner on the power play at 7:24 in the third. "Obviously he's grown as a player. It's been a long time since we were teammates [in Nashville], so his game's grown and he's gotten better, but he's always had that dynamic ability."Video: TOR@MTL: Weber blasts a power-play goal for lead

Which is why it's no surpise that Radulov is fitting in so well in Montreal.

"We always insist that our players play well at both ends of the ice, and he showed good work ethic in that sense to kill their game a bit tonight," continued head coach Michel Therrien. "Does [his defensive play] surprise me? No. It's what we expect from everyone on this team."

Those high expectations helped make the night a treat not only for the numerous fans who showed up in costume, but also for Price.Video: TOR@MTL: Dancing pug shows off his moves

"It's always good for a goaltender to rely on instincts and be able to read a shot. I put a lot of faith in my defensemen and the guys at the back door. They rely on me to stop the puck and I rely just as much on them to cut the passes off."

The only trick now, when November rolls in next week, will be to prove that it hasn't all been a disguise.

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