OTTAWA, Ontario (AP) — Carey Price made 43 saves, Brendan Gallagher scored in the first period, and the Montreal Canadiens defeated the Ottawa Senators 2-0 Sunday night to advance to the second round of the NHL playoffs.
Max Pacioretty sealed the win with an empty-net goal with 1 second remaining.
Montreal won the best-of-seven series in six games, but lost two in a row after taking a 3-0 series lead — and Ottawa nearly sent it to a deciding seventh game.
Price, nominated for the Vezina Trophy as the league’s top goalie, rebounded after allowing five goals in Game 5 with a masterful effort as the Senators outshot the Canadiens 43-20.
Montreal, which reached the Eastern Conference finals last spring, is in the second round for a second consecutive year for the first time since 1992 and ’93.
After controlling the game early, the Canadiens got the first goal for the first time in the series when Gallagher took Greg Pateryn’s high shot off his body and batted it past Craig Anderson at 13:26.
Montreal had the first six shots of the game, but the Senators outshot them 16-3 in a dominant second period in which they did everything but score.
The 20,500 fans at the Canadian Tire Centre were screaming for a call of too many men on the ice against Montreal when referee Chris Lee blew the whistle just before Jean-Gabriel Pageau put a puck in at 6:55 that had fallen past Price — so the goal didn’t count.
With former Senators star Daniel Alfredsson cheering from a luxury box, Ottawa went all out in the third for the equalizer, but Montreal finished with strong checking and two or three more solid saves from Price.
A late tripping call on Jacob de la Rose gave Ottawa a last chance on the power play, and near the end of it pulled Anderson for a two-skater advantage.
NOTES: P.A. Parenteau returned to Montreal’s lineup for the first time since Game 1. Brian Flynn sat out. … The Canadiens ended the series 1 for 20 on the power play.
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