The second match up of the NHL Semi-Finals started tonight over in Vegas. The Montreal Canadiens played their first game in the US in just about 15 months, faced off against the Vegas Golden Knights. Game 1 didn’t go Montreal’s way but no need to panic this early.
Cole Caufield got his first NHL Playoffs goal to break the Habs shutout at 12:05, also came on the power play. This would have hopefully been what shifted some more momentum up Montreal’s side. Caufield has been great since joining the lineup so a kick-start from him would have been great.
Sadly, Mattias Janmark had a dagger just 50 seconds after Cole’s goal.
(Because of course now he actually hits his shots.) This sunk Montreal’s momentum. Vegas always has the quick answer goals that slash the confidence their opponent built up. Montreal didn’t get a second on the board tonight but Vegas got another from Nick Holden in the third and this game finished up 4-1 with Vegas taking Game 1.
Of course both goaltenders were absolutely ridiculous. Marc-Andre Fleury had 28 saves on 29 shots, meanwhile Carey Price had 26 saves on 30 shots. That was as to be expected heading into this. Both goalies are phenomenal so as this series keeps going, it’s just going to be highlight save after highlight save.
Montreal’s hope got smothered after Janmark’s goal. Vegas’s defense was just too heavy to get through. When the Canadiens pulled Price they had plenty of decent shots but nothing could get past Fleury. Goaltending either way is going to be a deal breaker in this series. I think this series is going to be fun to watch. There’s some bad blood between them already and all this game did was crank that up to 11.
I’m not too worried. Both of these teams came in off huge win streaks, someone had to lose. Not to mention, this was Montreal’s first time playing in front of such a large crowd in over 15 months, that’s gonna mess with ya. Once again, I’m not worried about the Habs. Like I said the other day, I want them to win this series and they still have time. Dust off for the next one and move on, get even. Game 2 happens Wednesday night at 8PM CT again.
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Featured Image: Montreal Canadiens Twitter