Habs Goalie: Price (L)
Opposition Goalie: Vokoun (W)
Habs goalscorers: Darche
Opposition goalscorers: Frolik, Booth, Matthias
There was a series of saves that kept this game at 1-1 which I thought was going to be a real turning point in the game. The play started when Markov pinched, but got caught in Florida's zone. David Booth, who played very well all game long, was then away with the puck. The Panther beat Subban in a leg race and got a shot on net that was stopped. The puck, however, came back to him and he got another chance, but Carey slid across to make his biggest save of the night.
Andrei Kostitsyn - Game Puck
This wasn't a dominant performance, but when I looked at my dome he was the player that rose up for me. He skated very well tonight and was shooting and hitting throughout. Nothing to show for on the scoresheet, but a better effort than last night, more in line with last week.
Mat only played 7:57, but made the most of it by being noticed on pretty much every shift. His goal was created purely by hard work and that was very nice to see. I may have played him a little bit more that he was played tonight as he, in my mind, would have been better suited on G+G's line than Moen in this one.
Scott led what was a pretty invisible line tonight. Moen was nowhere to be found and all I ever saw Gionta doing was missing glorious chances (poor guy). The one bright spot, though, was Scott who I felt played with speed and determination. 9-5 on face-offs and a team-high 6 shots are good numbers for the centre who, I feel , is about to really get going.
Smooth skating, patience with the puck and a vision like no others were all on display for the first time this year from Markov. He was good tonight, but not quite his great self yet. That all said I thought that he was our best defender, especially in the offensive zone. In all he had quite a few chances and good passes. He took a whopping 10 shots of which 5 made it to the net.
PK played very well all game, but I felt wasn't that key on the PP. With Souray, Streit, Schneider and Bergeron we always had a big shot that could one-time and pick a spot with consistency. Subban runs a PP more like Markov so I am not too sure that they should be on together. In fact I think that the two players could be better used if they were paired with Spacek (Markov) and Hamrlik (Subban) on a permanent (ES and PP) basis. PK is a great addition offensively, but I feel that his shot isn't that effective (it is rarely on net) and we waste too much PP time to set it up.
It was an average game from Carey which included a few very good saves. The goals were all difficult and one shouldn't expect them to be stopped, the D should never let it come to that. His puck-handling was at a season's worst tonight (which says a lot) as he was lucky to escape with no major blemishes on any of his give-aways. It would be nice if he showed a little urgency after a give-away rather than casually skating back to the net as we saw on numerous occasions tonight.
Vokoun was great in this one as we had 41 shots, many of which were of decent quality. Luck, as well, was on Florida's side as loose pucks never seemed to find their way into the net. A game like this comes along once in a while and I think there isn't much you can do about it. It happens, we could have won, maybe we should have won, but let's move on. One thing that I would have changed tonight, though, is that I would have had Markov on the 5-on-3. Subban has had 10 games to run the PP and we have very few goals to show for it (are any really thanks to him?). That type of situation is Markov's bread and butter and I feel that he would have given us a much better chance at scoring than did PK. If the excuse is that Martin wanted to ease Markov into his role I don't buy it. If a guy can play 23+ minutes then surely 1.5 of those could be spared for the 2-man advantage. It was a bad coaching mistake and hopefully we have learned that lesson and will move on.