DALLAS (AP) -- Montreal's tie with the Dallas Stars felt like a victory to
Niklas Sundstrom's goal with one minute left in regulation drew Montreal
even and gave the Canadiens a point they didn't expect.
"It's a huge point for us and you can say we stole it," said Jose
Theodore, who made 19 saves. "We played the third period the way we wanted.
The way we played the first half of the game, we're very happy with the
Brenden Morrow gave the Stars a 1-0 lead with a power-play goal at 15:36 of
the second period. He converted Mike Modano's centering pass while Montreal's
Francis Bouillon was off for high-sticking.
Morrow, who has five goals in six games, notched his 10th goal of the season
and fifth with the man advantage.
But Sundstrom pulled the Canadiens even when he batted a rebound off a shot
by defenseman Sheldon Souray under the pads of goaltender Marty Turco for his
fourth goal. Seconds earlier, Montreal pulled Theodore for an extra attacker.
"I knew Shelly (Souray) was going to shoot it, so I went hard to the net,"
Sundstrom said. "The puck was just laying there and I was able to put it
underneath him (Turco). It's a big point for us. I know a tight game like this
isn't very pretty to watch for the fans, but we really needed the point."
Montreal dominated the third period and overtime, holding a 13-5 shots
advantage over the final 25 minutes.
"We seemed to be a little overprotective in the third period, but we didn't
want to be caught out of position," Modano said. "It's asking a lot out of
our guys to play a mistake-free period. It's just the style of game it was.
There weren't many opportunities. We had to take what we could get."
Said Stars coach Dave Tippett: "We felt we should have held on to win."
The Canadiens are 4-2-2-1 in their last nine games. They completed a
four-game road trip, taking points in three games.
"It was an important game for us," Montreal coach Claude Julien said.
"When you score in the last minute, it gives you confidence and it gave us a
precious point. It's a great way to build. There are a lot of regular ties
during a season, but this is a really good tie the way we did it."
Dallas, unbeaten in six games (4-0-2), got 20 saves from Turco.
Turco made a key save on Jan Bulis from close range at 7:55 of the first
period, then came up with two rapid-fire stops on Craig Rivet midway through
the second to keep the game scoreless.
Turco caught a break with under four minutes to play when Richard Zednik's
shot pinballed off Stars defenseman Sergei Zubov, then hit the right post and
bounced harmlessly away.
Canadiens general manager Bob Gainey was in attendance to watch his current
team face his former team. Gainey served as general manager of the Stars from
the time of their move from Minnesota to Dallas in 1993 until his resignation
on Jan. 25, 2002. He built the franchise into a Stanley Cup champion in 1999.
Gainey, who won five Stanley Cups during a 16-year playing career with the
Canadiens, took over as Montreal's GM at the start of this season.