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Tired-looking Canadiens squad squanders 3-1 lead in loss to Rangers

Tired-looking Canadiens squad squanders 3-1 lead in loss to Rangers
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Twenty-four hours after they rallied from a 3-1 deficit to defeat the New York Islanders 4-3 in a shootout, fatigue appeared to catch up to the Canadiens and they found themselves under attack in the third period.

Pavel Buchnevich tied the game 3-3 when he scored at 8:25 of the third period. He knocked home a rebound after Carey Price had made a save on Marc Staal.

The Canadiens shot themselves in the foot when they were called for too many men on the ice with less than four minutes to play. The threat was erased when Jimmy Vesey took a penalty 40 seconds into the New York power play, but that set up the 4-on-4 situation that led to the winning goal.

Tomas Tatar ended a nine-game goal drought with a pair of goals. His second goal of the game gave Montreal a 2-1 lead at 4:40 of the second period. He redirected Phillip Danault’s pass from the corner for his fifth goal of the season.

Special teams played a big role in a chippy second period, which produced 30 minutes in penalties and power-play opportunities for both teams. The Canadiens went ahead 3-1 when Max Domi scored a power-play goal at 6:27. Domi continues to be the offensive sparkplug for the Canadiens. He has 16 points in 15 games and has points in 10 of the last 11 games, with nine goals and four assists.

The Canadiens’ penalty killers had another perfect night, although there’s an asterisk attached to their 6-for-6 mark. Tony DeAngelo closed the gap to 3-2 when he threaded a shot through traffic late in the second period. He scored a second after a hooking penalty to Danault expired.

The Canadiens have made a habit of shocking their opponents early in the game and they did it again when Tatar scored at the 23-second mark of the first period. It was the fifth time this season the Canadiens have scored in the first minute of a game. Jordie Benn found Tatar in the neutral zone with a stretch pass to set up a 2-on-1 break with Brendan Gallagher. Tatar faked a pass and then beat Henrik Lundqvist for his fourth goal of the season.

Lundqvist, who has struggled against Montreal in the past, didn’t look good on the first goal, but he managed to weather a 17-shot barrage in the first period without incurring any further damage and the Rangers were able to pull even on Chris Kreider’s seventh of the season. Benn dove to break up Jimmy Hayes’s pass to Kreider, but the puck came back to Hayes and he found Kreider in front before Carey Price could react.

Liveblog: Rangers beat Canadiens 5-3
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