MONTREAL (AP) — Alex Chiasson won’t forget his goal that capped a comeback win over the Montreal Canadiens.
Chiasson delivered the go-ahead score in the third period and the Edmonton Oilers extended their winning streak to three games, rallying to beat the Canadiens 4-2 on Thursday night.
The Oilers winger grew up in Laval, Quebec, a short drive from Montreal, and idolized the Canadiens as a boy.
“I’ve always dreamed of getting one here,” Chiasson said of Bell Centre. “I grew up a Habs fan. My mom and dad used to bring my sister and me to games here. It’s always special coming into this building.”
Riley Sheahan, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Josh Archibald also scored for the Oilers, who trailed 2-0 in the second period. Mike Smith had 35 saves in his fourth consecutive start.
Phillip Danault and Jesperi Kotkaniemi scored for the Canadiens, who have dropped eight straight games for the second time this season. Montreal also lost eight straight (0-5-3) from Nov. 16-Dec. 1.
Carey Price stopped 22 shots and fell to 3-9-1 against Edmonton in his career.
“We can’t give up,” Montreal coach Claude Julien said. “We can’t hang our heads. We’re paid to do a job and we have to keep doing it. We’re running out of answers.
“We haven’t thrown the towel in as individuals or as a team. We show up every game and compete. A mistake here and there ends up in our net. An opportunity we should have buried doesn’t go in. Those are the challenges we have.”
Edmonton overcame a two-goal deficit by scoring four unanswered goals, including three in the third period.
After the Oilers won a battle for the puck, Sheahan sent a high shot past Price to make it 2-1 at 7:16 of the second.
Edmonton’s top-ranked power play got to work in the third period when Danault took a hooking penalty. Thirty-nine seconds in, Connor McDavid fed Nugent-Hopkins, who was alone in the slot and scored between the pads at 2:16.
The Oilers took their first lead at 9:40 of the third when Chiasson redirected Oscar Klefbom’s shot off the post and in, just out of Price’s reach.
Archibald added the empty-net goal with 34 seconds remaining.
The Oilers improved to 3-0-1 on their five-game trip.
“Play harder and execute harder — when we started doing that, we gave ourselves a chance,” Edmonton coach Dave Tippett said. “Before that, they were a desperate team, they were a quicker team. They were on loose pucks and executing and we weren’t.
“We had to play better if we were going to win. We played better in the third period and gave ourselves a chance.”
The Canadiens have been good at creating offense on the rush this season, and it led to the game’s first goal.
Tomas Tatar crossed the Edmonton blue line and dropped the puck to Danault. He fired a shot off Smith’s pad before scoring on the rebound at 12:35 of the first.
Another fast break led to Montreal’s second goal. Artturi Lehkonen entered the zone and found an unmarked Kotkaniemi, who beat Smith with a wrist shot at 2:24 of the second. It was Lehkonen’s fourth point in four games.
Montreal nearly took a 3-1 lead late in the second when Brendan Gallagher fought off three Oilers before springing Nate Thompson on a breakaway. Thompson went from his forehand to his backhand, but his shot clanged off the post.
NOTES: McDavid leads the league with 70 points. … Chiarot missed the game with a lower-body injury. … Ilya Kovalchuk played his 900th career NHL game. … The Oilers defeated Montreal 4-3 on Dec. 23. … Gallagher was back in the lineup for the Canadiens after missing the last four games with a concussion. The right winger was injured on Dec. 31, when he collided with teammate Ben Chiarot.
Oilers: At Calgary Flames on Saturday.
Canadiens: At Ottawa Senators on Saturday.
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