Cole Caufield broke a tie in the third period and Sean Monahan had a pair of assists against his old team as the Montreal Canadiens beat the Calgary Flames 2-1 on Thursday.
Rookie Juraj Slafkovsky also scored his fourth goal of the season for Montreal (12-10-1), which has won seven of its last 11 games.
Elias Lindholm had the only goal for Calgary (10-10-3). The Flames are 1-3-1 in their last five.
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Jake Allen made 45 stops to improve to 7-8-0. Jacob Markstrom, who was tested just 19 times, dropped to 8-6-2.
Tied 1-1 in the third, the Canadiens got a power play six minutes into the period when Andrew Mangiapane was sent off for roughing. He grabbed Josh Anderson from behind after the Montreal forward faked a cross-check on Markstrom as the two exchanged words after a whistle.
Montreal started the game in a 1-for-17 tailback with the man advantage. But on their second powerplay of the night, they needed just 31 seconds to convert with Caufield leaning in a one-timer after Nick Suzuki was set up on a cross-ice pass.
Slafkovsky gave Montreal the lead just 13 seconds in and the score remained that way until the final minute of the second when Calgary finally tied it.
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Lindholm’s attempt to center the puck from behind the net was sent away by Allen.
As a scramble for the loose puck ensued on one side of the Canadiens’ net, Lindholm curled in front on the other side unnoticed. When Jonathan Huberdeau eventually stuck the puck, he zipped it over the crease for a tap to Lindholm.
In his first game against his former team, Monahan was credited with an assist on the opening goal off a misplay by Markstrom.
The goalkeeper stormed out of his net after a loose puck and went into a sideways slide. Monahan was able to sidestep the Flames goalie and avoid a collision, but Markstrom tipped the puck right to Slafkovsky who stepped around the netminder and fired it into the empty net.
Markstrom has struggled at times this season. Coach Darryl Sutter rewarded goaltender Dan Vladar for his strong play of late with starts in three of the last four games.
Markstrom’s early miscue infuriated the home fans, who responded with a Bronx-you on his next save that came on a long-range shot.
Calgary outscored Montreal 12-6 in the opening period, but couldn’t solve Allen. Their best chance was Blake Coleman’s breakaway with two minutes remaining, but Allen made a road stop.
Monahan receives video tribute
Monahan was recognized with a video tribute during a first-period TV timeout and waved to the crowd as he was given a standing ovation.
He played 656 games over nine seasons with the Flames. After his second hip surgery, he was traded to Montreal in the offseason.
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Calgary’s five-game homestand continues Saturday against the Washington Capitals.
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