MONTREAL – Andrei Markov scored a power-play goal at 4:22 of overtime to lift the Montreal Canadiens to a 4-3 win Sunday against the New Jersey Devils.
After New Jersey’s Andy Greene was called for holding at 4:01 of overtime for taking down Erik Cole, a Rene Bourque shot from the slot missed the net but bounced off the end boards back in front. Cole took a swipe at it before Markov swooped in to put away the rebound, scoring his fourth goal in his last three games.
Markov has scored the game-winning goal in every one of Montreal’s three straight wins.
Brendan Gallagher scored his first NHL goal, Brandon Prust got his first in a Montreal uniform and Alex Galchenyuk had a pair of assists for the Canadiens (3-1-0), who handed the Devils (3-0-1) their first loss of the season.
Patrik Elias had a goal and two assists to reach the 900-point mark for his career for the Devils, who lost at the Bell Centre for the first time since March 11, 2008 after winning their last eight visits to Montreal.
Martin Brodeur, who snapped his own personal Bell Centre winning streak at seven games, stopped 28 shots for the Devils, while Carey Price made 22 saves for the Canadiens.
The Canadiens came out flying in the first period, jumping out to a 2-0 lead while spending practically the entire first 20 minutes in the Devils’ zone.
It could have been a much different opening period if Travis Zajac’s shot were about inch further to the right on a 2-on-1 break with Ilya Kovalchuk 40 seconds after the initial faceoff, but Zajac’s shot rang off the post to the right of Price.
Ryan White opened the scoring for Montreal at 2:25 after some great work by Travis Moen, who fought for position in front to tip an Alexei Emelin point shot and created a juicy rebound that White buried into an empty net.
Gallagher made it 2-0 at 13:35 off a 2-on-1 break with fellow rookie Galchenyuk, one-timing a perfect feed past Brodeur then jumping into Galchenyuk’s arms as the capacity crowd roared. Gallagher got his first NHL point on Galchenyuk’s first NHL goal last Tuesday against the Panthers only to have the favor returned against the Devils.
As badly as the Canadiens dominated the Devils in the first period, the tables were completely turned in the second as New Jersey was a completely different team, pinning Montreal deep in the zone for nearly the entirety of the first 10 minutes.
The pressure paid off when Mark Fayne’s point shot was tipped in front by Elias at 3:26 to make it 2-1 Montreal, but the Devils couldn’t tie it up before the second intermission.
Montreal went ahead by two goals at 2:00 of the third period on a great play by Alex Galchenyuk, who intercepted a clearing pass at the Devils’ blue line and set up Prust for his first goal in a Canadiens’ uniform.
But Prust and Galchenyuk were the source of the Devils’ second goal as both players were called for high-sticking during the same sequence, giving New Jersey a 5-on-3 power play at 4:32 of the third. David Clarkson capitalized less than a minute later, converting a feed from Elias for his third goal of the season at 5:23.
The Devils tied it 3-3 at 13:02 after twice being down by two goals when Elias beat the Canadiens defense to a puck deep in their zone, then set up Zubrus in front for his first goal of the season.
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