Another set-to resulted when Erik Cole bumped Toronto’s Nazem Kadri into Price’s net. In the melee that followed, Price gave the rookie’s helmet a swipe with his goal stick and earned a penalty for his trouble (it was served by Cole, who administered a three-part facewash to Kadri and he sat in the dislodged net.) Montreal stepped up the pressure late in the period and nearly tied the game through Tomas Plekanec, who was sent in alone on net by Gionta but couldn’t get the puck past Gustavsson despite two whacks at it.
Plekanec was also foiled by Reimer in the first period on a back-door play created by Mike Cammalleri, Montreal’s most dangerous forward on the night along with Eller.
There were obviously a few home truths discussed during the intermission in the Montreal room, because the Habs quickly tied the game in the third.
Subban’s gorgeous diagonal pass found Cammalleri lurking at the Toronto blue line, and he skated in toward the faceoff dot before hammering a slap shot high to Gustavsson’s glove side.
When Josh Gorges’ shot found its way through a thicket of bodies - Moen got a stick on the puck for his second of the night - there was something very like catharsis in the Bell Centre.
But the Habs couldn’t build on their lead despite long stretches of sustained pressure, and when a team is scuffling like this, such profligacy is not permissible.
The Leafs duly tied the game when a Grabovski shot produced a furious scramble in front of Price, who stopped Phaneuf close in, but Nikolai Kulemin was on hand to swat the puck into the open side of the net.
The Leafs had a decent opportunity to win the game in regulation, but Carl Gunnarsson’s slap shot was turned away by Price’s left pad.
There is clearly no love lost between these teams, Price appeared to give Grabovski an earful at the end of regulation as the Leafs centre jawed with Gorges.