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Montreal Canadiens' Scott Gomez celebrates his goal with Raphael Diaz against New York Islanders goalie Evgeni Nabokov in the third period of an NHL hockey game, Thursday. (Kathy Kmonicek/Associated Press)
Montreal Canadiens' Scott Gomez celebrates his goal with Raphael Diaz against New York Islanders goalie Evgeni Nabokov in the third period of an NHL hockey game, Thursday. (Kathy Kmonicek/Associated Press)

Scott Gomez scores! Add to ...

Oh such heartbreaking genius, such a mouth-watering display of otherworldly skill and rare scoring instinct.

I mean, did you SEE that Scott Gomez goal in Long Island?

On the power play and everything! Wow!

In case you missed it, the man his GM would doubtless call Mr. Gomez finally put the boots to a 369-day scoring drought on Thursday night.



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Just when you thought the Habs were going to start having to measure the scale of Gomez’s goal production in terms of geological epochs, he showed the boo-birds but good.

About time too, the situation in Montreal had deteriorated to the point where the local media were blowing the dust of Patrice Brisebois, Breezy-by himself, to talk about the indignity of being booed by the home fans (this is not to disparage Brisebois, who suffered from very real mood disorders as a result, but the people who insist on calling him up when stuff like this happens).

Anyway.

The Great Moment happened on a power-play midway through the third period, a Raphael Diaz shot banked off a defenceman’s skate directly onto Gomez’ stick.

In the re-telling several years from now, he’ll have sniped it top cheese on a Brett Hull-esque one-timer that left a permanent imprint on the net fibres.

The reality, of course, is somewhat grubbier: as Evgeni Nabokov scrambled desperately to his left, Gomez snatched at a weak, off-balance slapper that clanked off the inside of the post and dropped into the cage.

His teammates mobbed him like it was overtime - they all count, but some more than others.

Some wiseacre even threw a hat onto the ice.

Gomez celebrated with an understated fist pump - act like you’ve been there before! - and smiled as he joshed with Andrei Kostitsyn on the Habs’ bench. Wait a second, Andrei Kostitsyn speaks English?

Never mind that the NHL’s official website inexplicably called the goal a tip-in in their scoring summary.

The historic event, which will doubtless be celebrated with t-shirt vendors, smart-ass websites and drinking games, even stood as the winning goal as the Habs did their best to blow a 3-0 lead but fell just short.

“It’s good because we won. It’s nice to score, it’s been a long time, the most important thing is we got the two points,” the $7.3 million man mumbled after the game - for Gomez mumbles like few others in the NHL.

He also alluded to the fact that “I wanted to score more than you guys, trust me, but hey, the team, we’ve got to win, we’re not going to shy away from that.”

It seems a little churlish to make light of Gomez, but he’s a big boy and an inveterate and merciless kidder - it’s no fun to be the butt of jokes, but he’s made of stern stuff. He also managed to finish the game with a minus-1.

And hey, even Chris Phillips (0 goals in 54 games this year) got a pair last night to mark his 1,000th NHL game.

Lest anyone get too excited about Gomez’s exploits, the Habs only improved their statistical chances of qualifying for the playoffs by 2.3 per cent (they now have roughly a one in 10 chance of making it).

Oh yeah, and Max Pacioretty scored his first NHL hat trick in the win and Carey Price played like the second coming of Ken Dryden.

But did you hear? Gomez scored!

Follow on Twitter: @MrSeanGordon

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