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game recap

Panthers defeat Carey Price, Canadiens

Aaron Ekblad scores in overtime to end goalie's win streak

by Sean Farrell / Correspondent

MONTREAL -- Aaron Ekblad and the Florida Panthers had a bounce go their way to end record-setting streaks by goalie Carey Price and the Montreal Canadiens.

Ekblad scored with 2:01 remaining in overtime and Florida dealt Montreal its first loss in 11 home games this season, 4-3 at Bell Centre on Tuesday. 

Ekblad's stick broke on a one-timer from the right side of the slot for his third goal after Canadiens center Alex Galchenyuk's stick broke earlier on the play. 

"Weird goals were going in, and on the flip side of that, both goalies were making saves that you can only fathom in your dreams," Ekblad said. "So we got some big kicks from [Roberto Luongo], and obviously they got quite a few from Carey [Price]. And it's just going to take one of those to go in, and a few of them did go in tonight, and we're very happy for the outcome."

Video: FLA@MTL: Ekblad scores OT winner as stick breaks

Price's two-season winning streak ended at 13 games, the longest in Canadiens history.

The first NHL goalie to start a season with a win in 10 straight games, Price made 20 saves but fell short of tying George Hainsworth's 89-year-old Canadiens single-season record of 11.

"It would have been nice to have, but it's over now, so time to move on now," said Price, who missed most of last season with a knee injury and had not lost since Oct. 29, 2015.


WATCH: All Panthers vs. Canadiens highlights


The Canadiens home winning streak was a team record to start the season, and fell one game short of tying the 1963-64 Chicago Blackhawks, who had an NHL-record 11-0-0 start at home.

Alex Petrovic, Kyle Rau and Denis Malgin scored for Florida (8-7-1), which won consecutive games for the first time since starting 2-0-0. Luongo made 34 saves, and the Panthers won their second straight in overtime, improving to 4-0 this season.

"It was a funny night, their third goal was a lucky goal, too," Panthers coach Gerard Gallant said. "There were some funny goals tonight. We just talked about putting pucks at the net and getting people going there, and sometimes you get the lucky breaks and the lucky bounces. To get four by Carey is not easy to do."

Video: FLA@MTL: Malgin scores on tricky wrister for lead

Max Pacioretty, David Desharnais and Paul Byron scored for Montreal (13-2-2), which lost consecutive games for the first time this season.

"We're just worrying about our group here and what we have, and we've gotten off to a great start," Pacioretty said. "We gave ourselves a chance to win a game tonight [and] came up short."

Malgin, who scored in overtime to give the Panthers a 3-2 win against the New York Islanders on Saturday, put Florida ahead 3-2 at 17:42 of the second period.

Byron scored his fourth goal in five games to draw the Canadiens even at 3-3 at 5:46 of the third period. 

Video: FLA@MTL: Byron knocks home loose puck to tie the game

Goal of the game

Pacioretty curled in from the right side and scored on a wrist shot from just above the faceoff dot with 12 seconds remaining in Montreal's first power-play opportunity.

Video: FLA@MTL: Pacioretty opens the scoring with PPG

Save of the game

Luongo kept the game tied at 2-2 with a second-period save on Canadiens forward Tomas Plekanec shortly before Malgin scored to give Florida its second lead.

Highlight of the game

Aleksander Barkov's between-the-legs shot and Price's reaction save with his right pad may not have made a mark on the scoresheet, but the Panthers center's remarkable scoring chance in overtime will get plenty of views. "He's the niftiest player I've ever seen play the game," Ekblad said. "It's fun to watch, no doubt."

Video: FLA@MTL: Price makes superb save on Barkov in OT

Unsung moment of the game

Panthers defenseman Michael Matheson set up Rau's goal from the slot with a backhand pass between his legs from the end boards. "That was a bit of a guess," said Matheson, a Montreal native who had approximately 25 family and friends on hand for his first game at Bell Centre. "I think there were three or four guys right around me, so I figured somebody's got to be open out there. But the second it left my stick there was a part of me saying, 'What did you just do?' "

Video: FLA@MTL: Matheson feeds Rau between the legs for goal

They said it

"It was a back-and-forth game. We didn't think we had the best second period. We got some motivation in here from a few guys and we came out hot in the third. We felt that we weren't doing the right things, the little details it took to win in the second, and we nipped that in the bud quick and went back on the offensive." -- Panthers defenseman Aaron Ekblad


"It was just one of those games, but ultimately I thought we played pretty well tonight. Ultimately, I think I just needed to make a couple more saves there and we would have won that game." -- Canadiens goalie Carey Price

Need to know

Price's winning streak was the longest by an NHL goalie since Jonas Hiller won 14 straight for the Anaheim Ducks in 2013-14. ... Ray Emery of the Chicago Blackhawks holds the record for the most consecutive wins from the start of a season. He went 12-0-0 in his first 15 games of the 2012-13 season. ... Canadiens right wing Alexander Radulov was ill and did not play.

What's next

Panthers: At the Toronto Maple Leafs on Thursday (7:30 p.m. ET; TSN4, FS-F, NHL.TV)

Canadiens: At the Carolina Hurricanes on Friday (7:30 p.m. ET; FS-CR, SNE, RDS, NHL.TV)


Video: Ekblad pots OT winner to lead Panthers past Canadiens

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