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game recap

Canadiens end four-game losing streak, defeat Oilers

Plekanec ties career high in points with four

by Sean Farrell / Correspondent

Plekanec's goal pads lead in 2nd

EDM@MTL: Plekanec extends Canadiens' lead to 3-0

2/6/16: Tomas Plekanec enters the zone on the left wing and sends a wrist shot on goal that hits an Oilers' defender and in, extending the lead

  • 00:59 •

MONTREAL -- Montreal Canadiens goalie Ben Scrivens made the most of his opportunity to show the Edmonton Oilers what he can do.

Scrivens made 23 saves for his first win in five games with Montreal, and Tomas Plekanec matched his career high for points in a game with a goal and three assists when the Canadiens ended a four-game losing streak with a 5-1 win against Edmonton at Bell Centre on Saturday.

Brendan Gallagher and P.K. Subban each had a goal and an assist, and Lars Eller and Tom Gilbert also scored for Montreal (25-24-4), which ended a five-game home losing streak.

Scrivens, who was acquired from Edmonton in a trade for forward Zack Kassian on Dec. 28, lost his shutout when Benoit Pouliot scored a shorthanded goal at 1:51 of the third period.

"I'm not bitter about getting traded," said Scrivens, who was assigned by Edmonton to Bakersfield of the American Hockey League at the end of training camp. "I guess if there's any bitterness it's how I perceive myself getting buried, you know, to get sent down without a visa and spin your tires for three weeks and then get spot duty.

"I played 57 games in the League last year and then to kind of have that go against you, I mean, it's a new management group, at the end of the day it's a business, but I've been traded before. There's no bitterness based on being traded. I'm still friends with guys on the team, some of them, and bitterness comes with how I was treated on the way out, which I guess leaves a sour taste in your mouth, but what can you do?"

It was Scrivens' first NHL win since March 25, 2015 in the Oilers' 4-3 win against the Colorado Avalanche.

Video: EDM@MTL: Scrivens extends right pad to stop Draisaitl

"We knew what to do against [Scrivens], it's just he played on top of his game; he played great," Pouliot said. "He saved a bunch of goals in the first period. I think he kept the Canadiens in the game and then they took over."

Cam Talbot made 19 saves for Edmonton (21-27-5), which had outscored its opponents 12-3 during its past two games. Anders Nilsson replaced Talbot to start the third period and made 12 saves.

"That's as bad as we've been in a long time. To a man," Oilers coach Todd McLellan said. "Usually you get five, six, seven guys that give each other a pretty good night. Tonight we even lacked that. From the skilled players, the workers, the positional players on down it was a pretty flat night. We didn't skate well, we didn't pass, our structure was poor. ... We got what we deserved."

Rookie Connor McDavid was held without a point for the first time in three games since returning to Edmonton's lineup after missing three months because of a broken left clavicle.

"Obviously they have some very good defensemen and P.K.'s one of the best in the world," McDavid said. "It's good to get a chance to match up against him. He played very well."

McDavid, who had five points in his past two games, created an electrifying scoring opportunity in the third when he drove past defenseman Alexei Emelin and put his stick between his legs to evade defenseman Jeff Petry's checking, but his shot went over the net.

Video: EDM@MTL: McDavid dangles defense, shoots through legs

"He's got a bag of tricks," Subban said. "You don't know which trick he's going to use, so you just try to play him hard, play him tough, but he's one of those players that can make those types of plays, so it doesn't surprise me."

Montreal won for the sixth time in 27 games (6-20-1) after starting 19-4-3. The Canadiens had scored more than three goals twice in their previous 28 games, including a 5-1 win against the Boston Bruins in the 2016 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic on Jan. 1.

"Obviously, when you get rewarded for some good work on the ice, it's great," Subban said. "We've played a lot of hockey games this year where we've played well, we've played the system exactly the way that we wanted to, we created scoring chances (and) it just didn't happen for us, when the bounces aren't going our way. But we worked really hard today and we got rewarded for it."

Video: EDM@MTL: Subban joins play, pads lead with slap shot

Montreal, which hosts the Carolina Hurricanes on Sunday, has not won consecutive games since a four-game winning streak from Nov. 20-27.

Gallagher and Eller scored in the first period to give Montreal a 2-0 lead. Gallagher scored his 13th goal on a power play at 7:27 when he tipped Plekanec's shot from the right point past Talbot.

Eller increased the lead with his ninth goal at 16:11. Plekanec made it 3-0 with his 10th goal at 11:48 of the second.

Subban, who extended his point streak to five games with an assist on Gallagher's goal, scored his fifth goal at 18:01 to give Montreal a 4-0 lead He has two goals and six assists during his streak.

Pouliot put a backhand past Scrivens early in the third period to make it 4-1.

Plekanec matched his career high for points in a game with his third assist on Gilbert's first goal at 9:59 of the third, which completed the scoring.

"It was one of those nights where you touch the puck and it goes in," Plekanec said.

Video: Canadiens end four-game losing streak, defeat Oilers

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