MONTREAL -- Tomas Tatar scored with 41 seconds left in the third period, and the Montreal Canadiens rallied for a 3-2 shootout win against the Columbus Blue Jackets at Bell Centre on Tuesday.
Tatar scored his sixth goal when he one-timed Nick Suzuki's pass with Carey Price pulled for an extra attacker to tie it 2-2.
"We made eye contact and I was just trying to hide and find my spot," Tatar said. "Obviously a really beautiful play by Nick, and I was just ready to shoot."
[WATCH: All Blue Jackets vs. Canadiens highlights]
The goal came 1:12 after Zach Werenski gave the Blue Jackets a 2-1 lead. Werenski had a goal and an assist, and Eric Robinson scored his first NHL goal for Columbus (6-8-4).
"We've got to find a way, that's the main thing right now," Werenski said. "We had the lead there late. They make a play through our box to the back door, which we've got to stop that. I don't really know what the answer is right now."
Elvis Merzlikins, who was recalled from Cleveland of the American Hockey League on Sunday, made 30 saves but was denied his first NHL victory.
"I have to win games here," said Merzlikins, who made his fourth career start (0-1-3). "I don't know, I just can't win a game. But it's going to come. It's going to come."
Price made 33 saves, and Brendan Gallagher also scored for Montreal (10-5-3), which is 6-1-1 in its past eight games. Jonathan Drouin scored the only goal of the shootout in the second round.
Video: CBJ@MTL: Price denies Bjorkstrand for the win
"Whenever you have a comeback win when you score in the last minute, it's definitely a bonus," Price said. "[The Blue Jackets] were skating well, they were committed to playing both sides of the puck and you've got to give that team credit. They had an outstanding game tonight."
With the shootout loss, Columbus is 1-5-2 in its past eight games.
"We developed over 20 scoring chances in the game and we didn't finish," Blue Jackets coach John Tortorella said. "We have the game in hand, just can't get it done at the end. It's just the way it's going."
Werenski scored his fifth of the season with a shot from the left side at 18:09 of the third to make it 2-1.
Video: CBJ@MTL: Werenski beats Price for go-ahead goal
Robinson, who made his season debut after being recalled from Cleveland on Sunday, shot between Price's pads on Emil Bemstrom's pass at 16:46 of the first period to give Columbus a 1-0 lead. The goal was Robinson's first NHL point in 15 career games.
"It was obviously a relief," Robinson said. "A great play by [Bemstrom] there to find me."
Gallagher tied it 1-1 at 3:27 of the third on a wrist shot between Merzlikins' pads from just over the blue line.
"I wasn't really expecting to score," Gallagher said. "I was just trying to put a shot on net and maybe start the forecheck, and fortunately enough it went in. It was nice to tie that thing up, and the guys did a pretty good job of battling back tonight."
They said it
"I thought we played well for the most part tonight and that's the most important thing, is getting back to our game. I think we've kind of shied away from that here the last couple of games for the last little bit. But I thought we played hard. I thought we did a lot of good things, and it's just building on it now. It's still early in the year. Obviously, we need to find a way to get two points. But if we keep playing our game, I'd like to think things are going to start falling for us and wins are going to start coming." -- Blue Jackets defenseman Zach Werenski
"They played a really good hockey game, you've got to give them credit. I don't think we were as sharp as we can be. We've got Carey Price back in there, and he definitely was unbelievable tonight and we found a way to win. I mean, [Tatar] stepped up with a big goal. Those are games where maybe it wasn't our best; it wasn't terrible, but it wasn't our best and we found a way to get two points. Those are huge points at the end of the year." -- Canadiens forward Brendan Gallagher
Need to know
Blue Jackets defenseman Ryan Murray returned after missing six games because of a broken hand. … Columbus forward Nick Foligno served the first of a three-game suspension for elbowing Colorado Avalanche forward Pierre-Edouard Bellemare on Saturday. … Montreal is third in the NHL with 24 third-period goals. … Canadiens defenseman Shea Weber extended his point streak to four games with an assist on Gallagher's goal. Weber has 12 points (five goals, seven assists) in his past 12 games.
Blue Jackets: Host the St. Louis Blues on Friday (7 p.m. ET; FS-O, FS-MW, NHL.TV)
Canadiens: At the Washington Capitals on Friday (7 p.m. ET; NBCSWA, TSN2, RDS, NHL.TV)
Video: Canadiens secure shootout win over Blue Jackets