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Monahan scores twice in a 4-1 win in Montreal

by Staff Writer / Calgary Flames

MONTREAL, QC -- Sean Monahan had two goals and an assist, and Niklas Backstrom made 21 saves in his first NHL game in 14 months to lead the Calgary Flames to a 4-1 win against the Montreal Canadiens at Bell Centre on Sunday.

Joe Colborne and Johnny Gaudreau scored, and defenceman Dougie Hamilton had three assists for Calgary (31-35-6), which began a three-game road trip following a 3-1-2 homestand.

Michael McCarron scored his first NHL goal for Montreal (33-34-6) to end Backstrom's shutout at 12:57 of the third period. Mike Condon made 30 saves.

The Canadiens had gone 112:57 without a goal when McCarron scored. Montreal forward Paul Byron scored in overtime for a 3-2 win at the Buffalo Sabres on Wednesday.

Montreal has lost four of five to fall below .500 for the first time this season.

Colborne scored his 15th goal of the season at 16:06 of the second period to give Calgary a 1-0 lead.

Monahan made it 2-0 with 57 seconds left in the second when he redirected Hamilton's slap pass from the right point past Condon's outstretched right pad.

Gaudreau scored his Flames-leading 27th goal of the season at 10:38 of the third to increase the lead to 3-0.

Monahan's second goal of the game, his 26th of the season, made it 4-0 on a power play at 12:21. He has five goals and nine points in the past six games.

Backstrom alertly made a save when Flames defenceman Mark Giordano put a backhand directly on his own goal when he was trying to clear the puck back off the end boards in the second. Giordano skated past Backstrom afterward to bump fists.

Backstrom, who was acquired in a trade from the Minnesota Wild on Feb. 29, had not played since Jan. 13, 2015. He will start at Minnesota on Thursday and is the Wild's leader in games played by a goalie (409), wins (194) and shutouts (28). Calgary's next game is against the Toronto Maple Leafs on Monday.

The Canadiens host the Anaheim Ducks on Tuesday.

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