Cammalleri's hat trick lifts Habs over Rangers
Mike Cammalleri's overtime winner lifted the Montreal Canadiens to a 5-4 win over the New York Rangers in Montreal on Saturday.
The Habs forward had a hat trick and added an assist.
"Yeah, it's a special night," said Cammalleri. "It's early in my Montreal career on a Saturday night and for us to get a big win and to get the hat trick is very special, I'm not going to underplay that."
Just 4:16 into the first period Cammalleri netted his third goal of the season.
Former Ranger Scott Gomez hit a falling Brian Gionta, who chipped the puck cross-crease to Cammalleri and he beat Henrik Lundqvist high on the glove side.
"Once [Gomez] gave it to me, I knew we had a 2-on-1 and I got tripped up there," Gionta said. "I knew [Cammalleri] was still back door so I just tried to get it across, and it went over the 'D's stick and right to him."
The visitors evened the score at 9:22.
Newly acquired Canadien Marc-Andre Bergeron's clearing attempt found the stick of Rangers forward Artem Anisimov who lifted the puck over Jaroslav Halak to tie the game 1-1.
New York (7-4) struck again quickly.
At 14:42, Ales Kotalik continued his hot start, burying his 5th goal of the season. The Rangers winger jumped on a loose puck in front of Halak and found the back of the net.
The Rangers added another late in the first. With only 58 seconds remaining, Matt Gilroy got his second of the year and made it 3-1.
Rangers coach John Tortorella felt the game was New York's to win.
"The effort was there," he Tortorella said. "They came out and really came at us, and then we took over the game. And then we lost momentum by really beating ourselves with turnovers and penalties."
Montreal (5-5) answered at 8:48 of the second, making it 3-2.
After a solid penalty kill, Canadiens forward Matt D'Agostini poked the puck past Brandon Dubinsky, charged to the net, and one-timed a Maxim Lapierre pass for the his first goal of the season.
"The game's going our way and it's a turnover in the neutral zone by [Dubinsky] that — it just can't happen," Tortorella said.
"We have stressed that, especially after the last game, and it's just a huge momentum swing. If you're not helping us in one area and you make mistakes in that area, then you're just going to lose your time."
The Rangers regained the two-goal cushion at 11:56 of the second when Marian Gaborik beat Halak for his eighth goal of the season.
After Marc Andre Bergeron's powerplay goal made it 4-3, Mike Cammalleri got his second of the game at 18:58 and evened the score at 4-4.
"He's a creative player," said Gionta, who set up the first goal. "He's a goal scorer but he also sees the ice extremely well and he finds that open guy when it's there."
Montreal has won three in a row while New York has lost three straight.