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02/02/2014 6:41 PM EST
Jets slip past Canadiens 2-1
WINNIPEG 2, MONTREAL 1
MONTREAL (AP) -- The Winnipeg Jets skated off with a win. The
Montreal Canadiens left the ice with complaints.
Michael Frolik scored 1:04 into the third period to give the
Jets a 2-1 victory over the Canadiens on Sunday.
Tobias Enstrom also scored for the Jets, and Al Montoya stopped
Brian Gionta scored for Montreal. Carey Price, playing his
second game in as many days, made 33 saves.
But the Canadiens felt the Jets should have been called for a
penalty as Montreal pressed for the tying goal.
In the final minute, Montreal's Brendan Gallagher was roughed up
by three Jets, preventing him from getting out of the offensive
With their net empty, and an extra skater on the ice, Gallagher
was kept on the wrong side of the blue line for roughly 20
seconds, so the rest of the Canadiens couldn't enter the
Gallagher was cross-checked into the net by Zach Bogosian,
punched and elbowed in the head by Montoya in the crease, and
then elbowed again by defenseman Jacob Trouba.
However, no infractions were called.
"There could have been five penalties there," said Canadiens
coach Michel Therrien, who watched the replay before speaking to
the media. "We're definitely going to ask the league for
explanations. It's very frustrating. It could have given us the
chance to tie the game."
But Montoya, who earned his 10th win of the season, wasn't
buying any of it. He suggested that Gallagher was doing his best
to stay in the zone and draw a penalty.
"No. 11?" Montoya asked, apparently not knowing Gallagher by
name. "We were all caught up. The referees saw that. They were
there. You know he was doing something for a reason."
After the game, defenseman Josh Gorges spoke to reporters on
Gallagher's behalf, calling the 5-foot-9 forward too "fired up"
and "heated" to address questions about the game's final minute.
"I have to be careful with what I say," Gorges said. "It was
pretty evident they were not allowing him to get out of the
zone. He took a punch to the head from the goalie, got tripped
up from the defenseman, and the guy coming off the bench gave
him another shot."
Gallagher was sent to the penalty box three times during the
game, for roughing, holding, and tripping. He finished the game
with two shots, six penalty minutes and a minus-1 rating.
"I can't comment on how (the referees) feel toward any one
individual player," Gorges said. "I don't know if there's a
grudge or something. It's too bad."
Frolik's early third-period goal stood up as the winner. After a
Winnipeg dump-in, Price mishandled the puck outside his crease
and lost possession to Andrew Ladd. The Jets captain found a
streaking Frolik in front of the net, and Price couldn't make it
back in time to stop the shot.
The Jets (27-25-5) have won eight of 10 since Paul Maurice took
over as coach on Jan. 12. Winnipeg is still last in the Central
Division, but the Jets are only four points off the final
playoff spot in the Western Conference.
Winnipeg, which has won four of five on the road, beat the
Canadiens for the first time in seven meetings.
"We've made some pretty big strides," Maurice said. "There's
still a lot to cover. It's what we want our team to look like.
We want to define what the Winnipeg Jets' game is. That's going
to take a long time to do.
"We're big and we're fast and we're young. We want to use that.
We want to be aggressive with our size and our speed."
Winnipeg came out strong, outshooting the Canadiens 7-0 in the
first three minutes. A few key saves by Price kept the game
Enstrom put the Jets on the board at 9:13 of the second.
The Winnipeg defenseman carried the puck along the end boards,
circled the net and squeezed a shot under Price's glove on the
wraparound for his sixth of the season.
After hitting two posts in the period, the Canadiens tied it on
a quick release wrister by Gionta at 17:06.
While playing 4-on-4, the Canadiens captain took a pass from
Tomas Plekanec on his backhand, quickly switched to the forehand
and fired in a sharp shot into the roof of the net.
Despite the no-call at the end, Gorges said the Canadiens
shouldn't have waited so long to get even.
"That wasn't the difference," Gorges said. "But it was a
frustrating end to the game."
The Canadiens couldn't benefit from two third-period power
NOTES: Michael Bournival was back in the Canadiens lineup after
missing Saturday's game because of the flu. Christian Thomas
dressed for the second straight game, and George Parros was a
healthy scratch. ... The Jets were without Evander Kane, the
team's third-leading goal scorer. He is out with an infection in
his hand. ... The Canadiens beat the Jets 3-0 in the teams'
first meeting on Oct. 15, 2013.
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