The Montreal Canadiens edged the Buffalo Sabres yesterday by a single-goal margin, all thanks to the Habs fourth line.
The unbelievable performance from the members of the fourth line combined with a solid performance from goaltender Carey Price, as the club avoided suffering a third consecutive loss.
Buffalo opened the scoring during the first period when Mike Grier broke in front of the goalie and went around Price.
The Canadiens answered quickly to that first goal of the game. Jeff Halpern completed a great pass from Mathieu Darche behind the net. Halpern's shot left goaltender Patrick Lalime clueless.
The Sabres took the lead once again, this time halfway into the second period. Jordan Leopold pounced on a loose puck at the side of Price's net.
Montreal replied even quicker to that goal. Only 46 seconds later, Benoit Pouliot tied the game up at two when Mathieu Darche, again, fed Pouliot with a great pass in front of the net.
Then a few minutes later, Pouliot beat Lalime with a powerful slap shot from the top of the circles. With two goals including the game-winner, Benoit Pouliot—now a part of the fourth line—really shined for the first time of the season.
Montreal Canadiens in November: Sink or Swim?
The welcomed output from the Pouliot-Darche-Halpern line prevents the team from sinking quickly in the standings for now. But the weak production from Brian Gionta, Scott Gomez and Michael Cammalleri will send the club into free-fall sooner or later, should those players fail to find a solution.
Will the Canadiens top players snap out of their slump in November? Or will the team sink gradually?
We will have a part of the answer when the Vancouver Canucks visit the Bell centre next Tuesday.