CH concludes pre-season calendar with defeat

MONTREAL – It’s not a bad thing that the Montreal Canadiens don’t start their season until next Wednesday. It will give them time to put their structure in order in defense, after being so-so at their last preparatory outing on Thursday.

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The Canadiens let a two-goal lead slip away and they sinned indiscipline in the second period, before finally losing 5-4 in a shootout to the Ottawa Senators in front of 7,500 spectators at the Bell Center.

CH ended their preparatory schedule with a record of two wins and four losses, including a tiebreaker.

« There is still a lot of work to do, it’s official, » conceded coach Dominique Ducharme, at the end of the evening. “We have to tighten up the game in defense. « 

The coach was not reassured by the performance of the three defensive pairs he saw starting the season together.

“I would have liked them to react better. I am less comfortable than I was. There is work to be done and we will find a way to do it. « 

Ducharme noted a lack of combativeness and dynamism, especially in individual battles, as well as shortcomings in terms of execution.

To return to the match, Josh norris settled the debate during the shooting session, in the fifth round.

Josh Anderson and Jeff petry quickly gave the Canadiens a 2-0 lead in the first period. The young defender Alexander Romanov collected an assist on each goal.

The Senators, who increased their record to three wins and as many losses before their last preseason game on Saturday, then came back with four straight goals. Norris sounded the charge with a brace on the power play. Shane Pinto and Chris Tierney added their other goals in regular time.

Nick suzuki narrowed the gap to half during a power play early in the third period. Petry created the deadlock with one minute remaining in the period.

In front of the goals, Jake allen (28 saves) of the CH was busier than its opponent Anton Forsberg (18 stops).

The moment of truth has come for a few Habs aspirants, including the young center player Ryan poehling which looked better on its fifth test encounter.

“He was correct,” Ducharme assessed him. We mostly used him outnumbered in the second half. We wanted to see it in that aspect of the game. It was a weird game on an evaluation standpoint because of the many penalties. We approached the game as one in the regular season in order to give the players some benchmarks. It was tight in the third period and there was extra time, so he (Poehling) played little.  »

Video: Norris wins Senators victory

Ducharme clarified that the final cuts would be made after obtaining clarifications from the NHL about the payroll and the status of Carey Price, among others.

« It may affect one or two decisions that we make, » he said.

Jonathan drouin was unable to take part in the match due to a virus other than the one you think you are.

“The situation arose suddenly before the game,” explained Ducharme. It was nothing serious, but the doctors did not want to take the risk by sending him home. A few days before the start of the season, we do not want a virus to spread in the team. « 

The Canadiens will kick off their 112th season with a visit to the Toronto Maple Leafs next Wednesday.

The Senators kick off hostilities in front of their fans the next day, when they host the Maple Leafs.

“It was probably our best five-on-five puck possession game,” said Senators coach DJ Smith. “We managed our meeting much better. We might have given them a little too much space in the third period, but overall we played better. The power play has finally unlocked and it made the difference. « 

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