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Habs wrap road trip versus Jets
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Montreal Canadiens will try to complete a four-game road trip with a third straight victory when they visit the Winnipeg Jets for Tuesday's clash at MTS Centre.
The Canadiens began their current swing with a 3-2 regulation loss in Calgary, but have responded with consecutive victories in Edmonton and Vancouver. Both wins came by identical 4-1 scores.
After downing the Oilers on Thursday, Montreal recorded its second straight 4-1 win Saturday against the Canucks. Max Pacioretty started the scoring early in the first period for the Canadiens, who will open a five-game homestand when they play their next game this Thursday against Columbus.
Lars Eller tallied his fifth goal of the season, while Tomas Plekanec and Josh Gorges also lit the lamp for the Canadiens. Carey Price turned aside 39 shots for Montreal.
"We played an excellent third period, our special teams played really well, we blocked a ton of shots...it was a complete effort by everybody," Price said.
Eller's game-winning goal was an odd one to say the least. Vancouver defenseman Dan Hamhuis misplayed the puck behind the net and it went on to bounce off both of Roberto Luongo's skates and into the net. Eller was the only Montreal player close to the net and he was credited with a short-handed goal that gave the Habs a 2-1 lead.
Canadiens captain Brian Gionta missed Saturday's game after leaving the road trip to return home to Montreal due to family reasons. Gionta could be back with the team in time for Tuesday's game.
While Montreal attempts to end its current road trip on a positive note, the Jets hope to keep heading in the right direction on the club's current six- game road trip.
Winnipeg lost its third straight regulation game in the opener of this homestand, a 4-1 setback against Dallas on Friday, but rebounded with Sunday's 3-0 victory over the winless New Jersey Devils. Al Montoya turned aside all 24 shots he faced in his season debut, backstopping the Jets to their first win since the second game of the season.
Ondrej Pavelec started the first five games of the season before getting a breather on Sunday. Despite Montoya's strong showing on Monday, Pavelec expects to get the start tonight.
Evander Kane scored two goals on Sunday for Winnipeg, while Michael Frolik added a pair of assists.
"I take it upon myself to be one of the leaders in this room and on the ice," Kane said. "Whatever area I feel I need to lead in, whatever the situation is in the game I want to do that and I try to do that as much as I can."
After Tuesday's tilt, the Jets will close this homestand with games against St. Louis, Nashville and Washington.
The Canadiens have won five straight and eight of the last nine meetings with the Jets franchise. Montreal also has taken two of three in Winnipeg since the Jets relocated from Atlanta and the Habs have won three of the past four road meetings in this series overall.
10/15 11:04:02 ET