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Giving thanks

Pacioretty scores game-winner against Carolina with assists from Plekanec and Gallagher

by Steven Nechay @CanadiensMTL / canadiens.com

MONTREAL -- American or not, the Habs all had something to be thankful for on Thursday.

Still, it was only fitting that U.S.-born captain Max Pacioretty scored the game-winner on American Thanksgiving.

"Two points are two points, but it's a lot fun to get kind of a greasy one," acknowledged the 28-year-old, who lit the lamp 0:14 into the final frame after forcing a rebound through Cam Ward's pads. "It wasn't perfect. They play a similar game to us -- tight in the neutral zone, forcing us to make plays and then capitalizing on our mistakes -- but as the game went on, we wore them down a bit and got a lucky break."Video: CAR@MTL: Pacioretty sneaks goal past Ward

But what's greasy for Pacioretty is gravy for Andrew Shaw.

"He might think that's a greasy goal, but it's one I'd take any day," cracked the gritty winger, who got the Habs on the board with a first-period equalizer at 12:08. "I think he's happy with it. We're all happy. We win, everyone's happy. We're going to use that going into this road trip."

Indeed, the Habs were happy to stuff two more points into their luggage before taking off on the team's longest road swing of the season.Video: CAR@MTL: Shaw bags a top-in to level the score

"It's confidence boost for us, and we're going to let it snowball into this long trip," continued Shaw, who was named the night's first star. "It's tough to be on the road for 12 days, so we're going to come together and push through and have a great road trip."

'Snowball' might be the wrong choice of words for a trip that includes stops in Anaheim, San Jose, and Los Angeles, CA, but semantics aside, Shaw is right about having a lot to be thankful for.

Not only did Pacioretty, Brendan Gallagher, and Tomas Plekanec team up to end a trio of scoreless streaks on the game-winner, but an up-and-coming Hab also showed promise in just his third game of the season.

"I knew he was going to be great," added Shaw of linemate Charles Hudon, who now has four career points in just six NHL games. "He has a lot of speed and skill. He's a great player and that's why they called him up. He makes good plays, he's always in a good position for you to move the puck to him, and he's always supporting you."

And although the 22-year-old may be new to the big leagues, he's no stranger to his linemates.

"I think Andrew was the first guy who came to see me when I arrived at development camp this summer, so there's a good connection between us," shared Hudon. "I've known David for a long time, so we have good chemistry on and off the ice. I just need to keep working hard."

On Thursday night that hard work paid off to halt one of the league's hottest teams, stopping the Hurricanes win streak at five.Video: CAR@MTL: Price turns away McClement's shot

"With Hudey and Davey, we're a dangerous threat. They both have lots of skill and they were great tonight," concluded Shaw. "Our line was good, we created a lot of chances in the offensive zone, and [Carey Price] was great in nets so we came out with a big win."

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