The Montreal Canadiens were kind in their assessment of their first round series with the Toronto Maple Leafs.
“That’s a heck of a hockey team on the other side, they competed hard, pushed us to the brink and we had to find out a lot about ourselves,” said Brendan Gallagher, who opened the scoring last night with his first goal of the playoffs.
Canadiens goalie Carey Price noted, “This is the best team game that we’ve played this season.” Price made 30 saves in the 3-1 victory.
Leafs fans will not be so forgiving.
The Canadiens battled back from a 3-1 series deficit to defeat the Maple Leafs in seven games, shutting down their leading scorers. Auston Matthews had just one goal in the series. Mitch Marner had none. Both were stymied by a Montreal team that was suffocating at times
“I don’t think there’s much to be said,” said Matthews. “I’m not really sure how to sum it up. It’s extremely frustrating all around.”
Leafs fans won’t disagree.
It was their fourth game seven loss in recent memory.
Montreal will face Winnipeg in the second round beginning Wednesday night.
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