Canadiens defeat Flames, extend season-opening point streak to seven


MONTREALBrendan Gallagher and Shea Weber scored power-play goals in the first period, and the Montreal Canadiens won their home opener 4-2 against the Calgary Flames at Bell Centre on Thursday.

Josh Anderson and Tyler Toffoli scored in the second for Montreal (5-0-2), which has a point in each of its first seven games and has won three straight. Jesperi Kotkaniemi and Jonathan Drouin each had two assists.

Carey Price made 23 saves. He lost his shutout bid when Milan Lucic scored with 1:23 remaining to make it 4-1.

Rasmus Andersson scored a power-play goal with 23 seconds remaining to draw Calgary within 4-2.

David Rittich made 17 saves in his first start for the Flames (2-3-1), who lost their third straight in the first of a two-game set against the Canadiens.

The teams will play the second of nine games against each other this season in Montreal on Saturday.

Corey Perry got his 799th NHL point with a blind backhand pass from the left edge of the crease to set up Gallagher, who drove the net and scored his third goal to give Montreal a 1-0 lead at 10:07 of the first.

Weber made it 2-0 at 15:39 when his one-timer from the left point deflected off Flames defenseman Juuso Valimaki‘s stick. It was his 104th power-play goal, the most among active NHL defensemen.

Anderson scored his fourth goal at 8:21 of the second. He batted in a rebound of Kotkaniemi’s shot on a 2-on-1 to put the Canadiens up 3-0. 

Toffoli, who was named the NHL’s First Star of the Week on Monday, made it 4-0 at 19:35 with Montreal’s fifth shorthanded goal in the past six games. 

His team-leading sixth goal came on a breakaway when he settled the puck down and jammed it between Rittich’s pads after struggling to control Nick Suzuki‘s lob pass up the middle.

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