|Date of game: 10/9/2014
Recap: Washington vs. Montreal
Washington, DC (SportsNetwork.com) - Tomas Plekanec and the Montreal Canadiens are 2-0 for the first time in five years.
Playing their second game in two days, the Canadiens shook off a slow start Thursday night to beat the Washington Capitals and their new coach Barry Trotz 2-1 in a shootout.
Brendan Gallagher scored the winner in the fifth round, beating Braden Holtby with a snap shot after Plekanec tied the game in the third period with his third goal of the season.
He had two against the Maple Leafs in Wednesday's opener in Toronto, including the winner with 43 seconds left.
His goal on Thursday came not long after Montreal had one disallowed because Rene Bourque made contact with Holtby in the crease, and just minutes before another would-be goal was overturned upon review.
Dustin Tokarski made 29 saves for Montreal, most of them after 19-year-old Capitals rookie Andre Burakovsky scored early in the first period. He blocked shots from Burakovsky and 50-goal scorer Alex Ovechkin in the shootout.
The Canadiens improved to 2-0 for the first time since 2009.
"Back to back games, on the road, it was a good test for us," said Tokarski. "They came hard at us in the first (period). We expected that. They kind of took it to us there, but after that guys regrouped and showed a lot of character and got the two points."
The Capitals dropped their opener under new coach Trotz despite 23 saves from Holtby. It was a losing start to what the team hopes is a winning turnaround from its ninth-place finish in the conference last season, which kept the Caps out of the playoffs for the first time in seven years.
Trotz, who was let go by the Nashville Predators after coaching them for their first 15 seasons, replaced Adam Oates after he was also fired. Washington has a new general manager in Brian MacLellan, who was promoted to replace George McPhee.
Burakovsky, a first-round draft pick last year, scored on a one-timer from the slot 6:43 into the game after Troy Brouwer took the puck from Canadiens star P.K. Subban on a turnover in the left circle.
"I thought he was going to have the winner there for a long time," said Trotz. "We were really playing quite well. They weren't getting too many chances and the chances they were getting were mostly results of some zone time and on the faceoff."
The Capitals peppered Tokarski with 15 shots in the first period while Holtby remained relatively unchallenged at the other end, facing just two shots.
But the Canadiens picked it up in the second period with 12 shots and Plekanec scored on their seventh shot of the third.
His goal at 10:31, on a one-timer from the right circle off Alex Galchenyuk's pass, came moments after P.A. Parenteau's goal was waived off.
Later, Montreal looked to have a go-ahead goal with 4:29 left in regulation until a replay review showed Bourque's slap shot hit the upper-right corner of the crossbar after zipping over Holtby's shoulder from the left circle.
Ovechkin led a 2-on-1 with Nicklas Backstrom late in overtime and kept the puck himself, but missed the net in the best chance during that period.Game Notes
Both teams were scoreless in five power plays ... Montreal will continue a
season-opening four-game road trip Saturday in Philadelphia ... Washington
plays in Boston on Saturday.