Saturday, 1 February 2014

Today in Habs History: January 15th Edition

Allowing five goals on eight shots from the eighties powerhouse Edmonton Oilers, could certainly ruin a rookie goalie’s confidence. But when the goaltender’s name is Patrick Roy, it is a completely different story.

“I don’t want to say I lost my confidence but I played bad against Edmonton,” Roy said on that loss back on January 11, 1986. “But tonight helped.”

The tonight he was referring to was four days after that disappointing night. Roy was back between the pipes against the Winnipeg Jets. On that night, he didn't allow a single puck past him, earning his first career NHL shutout.
Guy Carbonneau had the Canadiens on the board with just a 1:05 of play, stealing the puck off Jets defenseman Dave Ellett and blasting a shot past Dan Bouchard.

Rookie Stephane Richer, who had missed 13 games with an ankle injury and not scored a goal in nearly two months, added to the lead just under six minutes later on the power-play. Mats Naslund added a third goal in the second period and Richer closed out the scoring 11 minutes into third period.

The Canadiens defense, that was without Chris Chelios due to a knee injury, made Roy’s night relatively easy, allowing just 19 shots at the 20-year-old goalie and just ten in the first two periods.

It was argued by The Montreal Gazette’s Red Fisher that the Jets, having done the Habs a favour the night before by beating the division leading Quebec Nordiques, were tired and disinterested in the game.

“The boys did the job in front of me,” said Roy post-game. Roy’s hardest save came at the ninth minute of the second period, when his glove hand reached out and snagged a Scott Arniel shot that seemed destined for the top corner.

It would be the only shutout of the season, en route to a Stanley Cup later that spring for the man soon to be known as St. Patrick. Roy would put up 29 whitewashes with the Canadiens and 66 in his NHL career.

Elsewhere on this day..

1927: Netminder George Hainsworth picks up his 5th shutout in his rookie season as the Canadiens blank the Maroons 1-0.

1949: Maurice Richard’s 15th career hat trick, during a 7-1 win over the Chicago Black Hawks, puts him at 200 career NHL goals. “The Rocket” became the fourth Canadiens player to reach the milestone.

1955: The Rocket scores two goals in his 700th career game, in the Canadiens 4-3 loss to the Detroit Red Wings.

1966: Claude Provost’s goal and three assists leads the Candiens to a 6-4 victory over Chicago.

1981: Pierre Larouche records his 7th career hat trick and adds an assist in the Habs 7-3 win over the Winnipeg Jets.

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