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Habs rally past Coyotes
Montreal, QC (SportsNetwork.com) - Max Pacioretty potted the final two markers of Montreal's three-goal third period, as the Canadiens rallied for a 3-1 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes on Tuesday at Bell Centre.
Pacioretty assisted on Andrei Markov's game-tying tally 2:26 into the third and then scored his 13th of the season on the power play with 6:42 to play before adding an empty-netter in the closing seconds to account for the final margin.
Carey Price backstopped the victory with 26 saves for Montreal, which improved to 11-0 with three ties over its last 14 meetings with Phoenix.
Mikkel Boedker notched the Coyotes' lone goal, while Mike Smith stopped 25-of- 27 shots for Phoenix, which hasn't won in Montreal since Oct. 28, 1996.
With the Canadiens trailing 1-0 to start the third, Phoenix forward David Moss went off for holding 2:01 in the final frame and the Canadiens found the equalizer just 25 seconds into the ensuing man-advantage.
After digging the puck out of a scrum along the right midboards in the Phoenix zone, Pacioretty sent a cross-ice feed that caromed off the left boards and into the left circle, where Markov let fly a one-timer that slipped through the five-hole of Smith to tie the tilt at 2:26.
"Markov leaned into a slap shot and motivated us in the third," Pacioretty said of his team's rally. "It was our best period of late and we used it as a building block."
Pacioretty put the home team on top late in the frame after Oliver Ekman- Larsson was called for delay of game at 11:43 after batting the puck out of mid-air and into the safety netting above the glass.
With Montreal working in the offensive zone, Pacioretty controlled the puck along the goal line near the right corner before throwing a pass toward the front of the cage that deflected off the skate of defenseman Michael Stone and snuck past Smith to make it 2-1 with 6:42 left in the third.
"We took two penalties in the third period and they capitalized," Phoenix head coach Dave Tippett said. "That was the difference in the game."
Pacioretty tacked on an empty-netter from just behind the red line for his 14th of the season.
The Coyotes struck first just over six minutes in when Boedker had his wrister from the right circle turned aside before swatting the rebound into the back of the net amid a scrum in front to make it 1-0 at 6:14 of the first period.
The Coyotes fell to 0-6-1 with a pair of ties since a 5-4 overtime win in Montreal 17 years ago. Their last win of any kind in this series came in the desert on Dec. 9, 1998 ... Montreal improved to 12-7-2 at home this season ... Phoenix finished 0-for-4 on the power play, while the Canadiens went 2-for-4.
12/17 23:06:50 ET