Montreal's Gallagher confident in his linemates ahead of Game 3 against Rangers

Ross Houston
April 22, 2017

NEW YORK-Asking around the NHL, you'll likely hear several of the same refrains when it comes to the tenants of playoff hockey.

"He (Lundqvist) played well, for sure", said Weber. "It wasn't mistake-free and no games are", said Julien after the Canadiens' 3-1 win over the New York Rangers in Game 3 of their Eastern Conference quarter-final series on Sunday.

"We've got one game, we're at home, the feeling is win a game and tie a series", Marc Staal had said Tuesday morning. "There's no secret - he has one of the hardest shots in the league". I couldn't believe I didn't get my arm up. You can flip pucks in their end all night and just chase it around, but that's not working smart.

"We needed this for so many reasons", Lundqvist said.

The Maple Leafs took a double-overtime thriller on Saturday, with Kaspari Kapanen finishing off a handsome feed from former Rangers grinder Brian Boyle to even the series at 1-1 heading into a pivotal Game 3.

By the first period's halfway mark, the Canadiens had seemed to withstand New York's push and the teams exchanged opportunities.

Carey Price stopped 32 of the 34 shots against him for Montreal but was far from his best in Game 4.

But the Rangers didn't let up in the second period, retaking the lead when Rick Nash scored his second goal of the postseason, bringing the puck off the goal line extended and beating Price with a backhand inside the far post at 4:28.

"I walked into the zone and I see McDonagh was on me and the other guy come so I kind of thought we're supposed to have a guy in the middle", Radulov said.

"We were able to put pucks in places where we could get it back", said Derek Stepan. We can enjoy the moment tonight then get ready for the next one. We had some zone entries and offensive-zone time in the third. He had a good year, a 54-point season including six points in the last six regular-season games, but more importantly he had a quiet year. Canadiens defenseman Andrei Markov skated into his own zone to retrieve a puck that was dumped in along the boards.

The home team had a 2-1 lead in Game 4 of the teams' first-round National Hockey League playoff series, and losing was not an option for the Rangers to stay in realistic contention to advance. Montreal looked very bad in game one but they have rebounded with back to back victories and have shut down the Rangers offense since that time and while they haven't been lighting the lamp at a head turning pace they are doing enough to give Carey Price some breathing room and that is risky territory for the Rangers. Alex Radulov set the play in motion when he separated Brady Skjei from the puck at the blue line and passed ahead to Mitchell, who had a 2-on-1 break with Weber. They were scoring what felt like a dozen goals per game.

"We're definitely fighting it a little bit", NY defenceman Ryan McDonagh said. The team that stays even-keeled and just worries about that next shot is the team that normally ends up on top. "If it's not going well, we really need to simplify here, make one or two passes and look to get it to the net". "I think their D were able to save up some energy during the game because of that".

And now the series is a best-of-three. With Montreal on a slow line change, Jimmy Vesey took a pass at the blue line and sent Nash in alone for a flawless shot in off the far post. Game 5 is Thursday at Bell Centre in Montreal.

The Rangers made two lineup changes.

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