Werenski scores in OT, Blue Jackets beat Canadiens 2-1
MONTREAL (AP) — Sergei Bobrovsky made one big save without his stick, then turned away Montreal captain Max Pacioretty three times in a row. As far as Blue Jackets coach John Tortorella is concerned, that’s why Columbus got two points on Tuesday night.
Bobrovsky made 28 saves, Zach Werenski scored 1:09 into overtime and the Blue Jackets beat the Canadiens 2-1.
Werenski beat Charlie Lindgren with a wrist shot to the glove side, converting after a few stellar stops from Bobrovsky in the third period.
Bobrovsky, without his stick, robbed Jacob De La Rose with a blocker save on a 2-on-1 five minutes into the period. Three minutes later, he made three consecutive saves on Pacioretty.
“That’s the key to winning in the NHL, your goaltender has to do it,” Tortorella said. “A couple of saves Bob made in the third period, that’s a big reason why we’re getting points. Bob has been terrific for us. He never gives. He’s an athlete.”
Josh Anderson had a goal 2:29 into the game for Columbus. Paul Byron got Montreal’s goal early in the third.
Lindgren, making his fifth consecutive start for Montreal, stopped 23 shots.
Anderson got his team-leading seventh goal after Montreal’s Brandon Davidson tipped Markus Nutivaara’s point shot right to Anderson. He let the puck drop before batting it past Lindgren. Davidson was also at fault seconds earlier when Nutivaara intercepted his failed clearance at the blue line. The goal came on Columbus’ second shot of the game.
Byron, playing his 300th NHL game, came close to equalizing midway through the second period. With the Canadiens playing short-handed, Byron stole the puck from Seth Jones at the blue line and moved in alone on Bobrovsky, but the Blue Jackets goalie got his pad on the shot.
Montreal finally broke through when Byron poked a loose rebound over Bobrovsky’s shoulder into the top corner of the net at 12:14 of the third.
“We don’t want to wait until the third period or when we’re down to put the foot on the gas,” said Pacioretty, who took a game-high seven shots on goal.
With forward Torrey Mitchell out with the flu, the Canadiens were forced to dress seven defensemen. Rookie Victor Mete played on the fourth line with De La Rose and Byron Froese.
NOTES: Earlier on Tuesday, the Canadiens claimed goalie Antti Niemi off waivers from the Florida Panthers. Carey Price (lower body) and Al Montoya (concussion) are still out with injuries. … UFC middleweight champion Georges St-Pierre dropped the ceremonial first puck. … Quebec-born Blue Jackets forward Pierre-Luc Dubois played his first NHL game at the Bell Centre.
Blue Jackets: Host the New York Rangers on Friday night.
Canadiens: Host Arizona on Thursday night.
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