Tomas Plekanec scored in the eighth round of a shootout to lift the Montreal Canadiens to a 3-2 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins on Tuesday night.
Both teams had scored twice in the shootout before Plekanec beat Marc-Andre Fleury with a wrist shot and Carey Price then stopped Pittsburgh’s Jason Williams.
Montreal (21-24-9) won a second game in a row and beat the Penguins (30-19-5) for the first time in four meetings this season.
Louis Leblanc and Lars Eller had goals in regulation time for Montreal.
James Neal, with his career high 28th goal, and Pascal Dupuis scored for the Penguins, who outshot Montreal 34-30.
Neal tied the game at 7:32 of the third period when Evgeni Malkin’s pass from behind the net went off Plekanec’s stick right to the Pittsburgh winger to score on a quick shot from short range.
After a scoreless first period, the Canadiens got on the board 11:21 into the second when Andrei Kostitsyn chipped a puck into the Pittsburgh zone that was gathered in by Leblanc to score from the right wing.
Many of the best chances in the game came from both team’s strong penalty killing units and Pittsburgh’s came through with the tying goal 1:03 into the second frame.
Erik Cole’s pass was picked off at the Penguins blue-line and he sped down the right wing and fed a pass across the crease that went in off the skate of Dupuis, who looked to drag his foot but made no kicking motion to get it past Price.
Only 1:57 later, Eller threw a harmless-looking shot from long range toward the net before going on a line change and saw it hit the far post, off Fleury’s backside and into the net. Eller didn’t see it go in and looked confused by the sudden roar from the crowd.
Montreal defenceman Yannick Weber suffered a lower-body injury and had to be helped off the ice during overtime after a hip check from Chris Kunitz.
Overtime ended in a brief melee after P.K. Subban jostled with Malkin and Kris Letang put a flying tackle on the Montreal defenceman. Only two minor penalties were called.
Notes: Pittsburgh placed Aaron Ashom (concussion symptoms) on injured reserve and called up Jason Williams from Wilkes-Barre. Colin MacDonald returned to the lineup after sitting out two games. Forward Tyler Kennedy has joined the injured list with a lower body injury. . . Ben Lovejoy was scratched. . . Travis Moen returned after missing five games with an injury. Montreal sat out Rafael Diaz and Ryan White.
22:28ET 07-02-12 Sports
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