Canadiens beat Lightning 2-1 to force Game 6
MONTREAL (AP) — Montreal staved off elimination for the second match in a row by beating Tampa Bay 2-1 on Saturday, cutting the series deficit to 3-2 and raising the rare prospect of winning a best-of-seven playoff series after having trailed 3-0.
The winning goal came with 4:07 left when P.K. Subban slipped the puck to Pierre-Alexandre Parenteau for a long shot that went over the glove of Lightning goaltender Ben Bishop and into the net.
Game 6 is Tuesday back in Florida and the Canadiens now believe they can become only the fifth team in NHL history to rally from a 3-0 deficit.
“We don’t want this thing to end,” Parenteau said. “We worked hard for each other and we got rewarded. We win two games and hopefully it’s not over.”
Devante Smith-Pelley opened the scoring for Montreal midway through the first period, and Steven Stamkos tied it at 9:27 of the third.
“We were confident after Game 3,” Smith-Pelly said. “It was a heart-breaker, but we played the right way. As long as we keep that attitude and keep doing what we’re doing we’ll be all right.”
Carey Price made 24 saves for the Canadiens, and Bishop stopped 27 shots for the Lightning.
“We didn’t play a full 60 minutes,” Bishop said. “We turned it on in the third, but it was a little too late. A couple of days off will be nice.”
Smith-Pelly got Montreal on the board 9:03 into the game on an off-wing wrist shot to the top corner that went in and out so quickly it needed video review.
“It seemed to give everyone a shot of adrenaline,” Smith-Pelly said. “After that goal everyone was into it, the crowd was into it. It felt good.”
Lightning coach Jon Cooper credited Smith-Pelly and Parenteau for “two great shots.”
“Three goals were scored tonight and the goalies didn’t have a chance on all three of them,” Cooper said. “That’s pretty much how it’s going go to beat these guys.”