Josh Anderson’s second goal of the game was the overtime winner, giving the host Montreal Canadiens a 3-2 comeback victory over the Vegas Golden Knights on Friday and a 2-1 lead in their Stanley Cup playoffs semifinal series.
Taking advantage of a Vegas turnover at his own blue line, Jesperi Kotkaniemi fired a long pass that Anderson kicked out of the air to Paul Byron, who slipped a pass back to his teammate as he drove the net. Anderson buried the puck at 12:53 of the extra period.
Cole Caufield also scored in the win, and Montreal goaltender Carey Price made 43 saves in yet another outstanding performance. The Canadiens were without head coach Domonique Ducharme behind the bench on Friday after he tested positive for COVID-19.
Nicolas Roy and Alex Pietrangelo scored for the Golden Knights. Goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 24 shots, but his gaffe late in regulation cost his team the game.
Anderson scored his first goal in 13 games to pull the Canadiens even with 1:55 remaining in regulation. Fleury mishandled the puck behind his net, and it bounded to the front of the net, where Anderson was on the spot for the gift that forced overtime.
After a scoreless first period in which the Golden Knights outshot the hosts by a 17-3 count, Roy opened the scoring 3:16 into the second period.
While pressured when he had the puck at the end boards, Montreal’s Eric Staal flubbed a clearing attempt and put the puck right on Roy’s stick at the doorstep. Roy lifted a shot into the top corner.
Caufield’s breakaway goal 38 seconds later tied the game. After Nick Suzuki blocked a Vegas shot, he sprung Caufield, and the rookie lifted a glove-side shot into the net for the goal that extended his point streak to five games, in which he has netted two goals and five points.
Pietrangelo restored the Vegas lead 2:22 into the third period with his third goal of the series.
After starting a rush up the ice, Pietrangelo worked a give-and-go with Max Pacioretty that ended when he buried a long shot from the high slot. Of the eight goals scored by the Golden Knights in the series, six have been scored by defensemen.
Game 4 in the best-of-seven series will be played Sunday in Montreal.
–Field Level Media
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