“Marty said it well. We have to see this as the last exam in school before the summer. We want to win for Carey, Gerv and Flower. »
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Jordan Harris had shared the outline of Martin St-Louis’ speech for the 82nd and final game of the club’s worst season.
The Canadian was keen to offer Carey Price a first win this year, but also Pierre Gervais and Alain Gagnon, who retired after long careers with the team.
For a very rare time, the CH passed a test by triumphing 10-2 over the Florida Panthers at Bell Center on Friday.
Bucking the strong trend that saw the team break multiple mediocrity records, the Habs ended the 2021-2022 season with a record number of goals scored in a single game.
Late in the game, fans chanted “Guy, Guy, Guy” after the tenth goal scored by Tyler Pitlick. It was a nice nod to the blond demon. Number 10 probably had a smile on his face from up high.
“I think it’s crazy that we scored ten goals tonight,” Caufield said. You can’t make that up. We did it for him. »
CH had not scored 10 goals in the same game since December 2, 2017, a 10-1 win against the Detroit Red Wings in Montreal.
As the Presidents’ Trophy winner with a 122-point harvest, the Panthers faced no danger on this visit to Montreal. Andrew Brunette had chosen to rest his main weapons in Jonathan Huberdeau, Aleksander Barkov, Claude Giroux and Sergeï Bobrovsky.
Three times Caufield
In his tenth NHL game, Harris scored his first goal. The 21-year-old defender set the tone for the game by beating Jonas Johansson early in the first half. Mike Hoffman, Cole Caufield and Brendan Gallagher followed with three more goals before the end of the opening period. We were able to close the books when it was 4-0 after twelve minutes.
Caufield ended on a high by scoring the first hat-trick of his young career. Mathieu Perreault also joined the celebration by scoring his fourth goal in the blue, white and red jersey. Perreault said he’s aware he could be playing his final NHL game.
Price also breathed a sigh of relief. Two days after a routine visit to New York with his surgeon, Number 31 didn’t need to test his knee too much. Price was thwarted six times in each of his two previous starts and played with confidence without needing to be great. He will therefore go into the long summer rest a little more calmly.
St-Louis had used an interesting image in the matinee, saying that Price was the one driving the bus. It was he who dictated its use when he wished. But the head coach did nothing about his future to dispel doubts.
“Dunno,” he replied when asked if Price had just played his last NHL game.
The 34-year-old goaltender made his 700th NHL start.
CH (22-49-11) boasts being the first team in NHL history to finish a season in 32nd place.
The Seattle Kraken managed to finish ahead of the Coyotes and the Canadiens.
When asked if he would stay behind the team bench next year, St-Louis gave a pretty straight answer.
“That’s my goal,” he replied with a smile.