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Plekanec: Habs must control their emotions

by Dan Rosen
MONTREAL -- Tomas Plekanec scored for the third straight game, but all his goal did was end Semyon Varlamov's shutout bid early in the third period. Plekanec was also the victim of an interference penalty in the second period and then lost his composure and picked up a second minor for unsportsmanlike conduct for chirping at the officials.

It was a rough night all around for the Montreal Canadiens, who fell 5-1 to Washington at Bell Centre. They trail the best-of-seven series 2-1 with Game 4 coming Wednesday.

Plekanec stayed in the Habs' dressing room for a long time to answer questions about what went wrong, goalie Jaroslav Halak's poor night that led his early departure and his own penalties.

Here is what Plekanec had to say:

Q: You got tagged for a penalty they weren't calling on the Capitals (interference) in the second period. Was that part of your frustration and why you got the unsportsmanlike conduct, too?

Plekanec: I don't know what to say. You said it. We didn't lose the game because of the referees. That's for sure. We lost it because we did the mistakes and we were frustrated. It's the emotion of the playoffs and that's all.

Q: When Jacques (Martin) pulled Jaro (Halak), was that a message to the team?

Plekanec: When you're down 3-0 you try to do something and maybe it will turn around for you. That's one of the things you can try and that was the decision coach made. I thought Carey (Price) jumped in and played really strong for us the rest of the game.

Q: How did you think Jaro handled it and how did you think he played tonight?

Plekanec: Well, I don't think he played bad. He was good, but on the rebound we have to do a better job to clear them. You have to help him out. He made the first saves, but the rebounds, that's our job to clear them out.

Q: Was it a stunned feeling on the bench after they scored the third one, considering how quickly they were able to string three together?

Plekanec: Well, it was a little bit, but we wanted to keep our heads up and keep going. You never know what's going to happen. We've done it before, scored three or four goals in a period, so we tried to do something but it didn't work.

Q: Why do you think you guys got so rattled in the second?

Plekanec: I don't know. We were down, obviously we were emotional. It's a big emotion because it's the playoffs and you don't want to lose the games. Emotions are good, but you've got to control them and tonight we didn't control them good enough. That's one thing we have to get better at. Frustration doesn't get us anywhere.

Q: Jaro has given up nine goals on his last 50 shots. Do you guys still have faith in him?

Plekanec: Yeah, he played great for us. He was a big reason we made the playoffs in the end and there is nothing we can complain about Jaro. He has been great to us, a great goalie. We have to do a better job defensively.

Follow Dan Rosen on Twitter at: @drosennhl

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