Well, that was interesting.
The Bruins have lost a game in regulation for the first time since Oct. 10.
Montreal jumped in front of Boston early, holding a 3-1 edge after the first period. The B’s, as they have often this season, struggled a bit in the second but were able to tie it a three apiece. However, a controversial offsides call in the third period on what would have given the B’s a 5-4 lead potentially could have spoiled the win streak, as Boston eventually fell 5-4 at Bell Centre.
Tuukka Rask didn’t look like his normal self, giving up five goals on 31 shots. Carey Price stopped 21 between the pipes for the Habs.
David Pastrnak extended his point streak with a power-play goal, while Connor Clifton, Anders Bjork and Sean Kuraly accounted for Boston’s other three tallies.
With the loss, the Bruins slipped to 11-2-2, while the Canadiens moved to 8-5-2.
HABS START FAST
It took just 1:13 for the Canadiens to strike first.
Jeff Petry’s pass deflected off the skate of Joel Armia to a waiting Victor Mete, who buried it past Rask with a wrist shot for the 1-0 lead.
Both Jake DeBrusk and Torey Krug had prime scoring opportunities, but Price stood on his head to keep the shutout intact with 13 minutes left in the opening period.
The B’s went on the power play when Mete was called for hooking and capitalized just five seconds in thanks to who else but Pastrnak. Krug fed the puck to the first-line winger who one-timed an absolute rocket past Price to make it 1-1.
But the tie wouldn’t last long as Montreal responded with two goals in less than a minute. First, Tomas Tatar wristed a shot by Rask that he makes nine times out of 10 to make it 2-1.
Then Paul Byron put Montreal up by two when he beat the Bruins goalie five-hole with 3:44 left in the period.
The Canadiens held a large 13-6 shot advantage over the B’s at the end of 20.
B’S TIE IT, HABS RECLAIM LEAD
Montreal had a chance to make it a three-goal game when Patrice Bergeron was whistled for hooking just 50 seconds into the second period but was unable to capitalize.
Clifton closed the gap with 7:17 gone from the second when he sniped the puck past Price’s shoulder to cut the Bruins’ deficit to 3-2.
Bjork then came in clutch for the Black and Gold in the final two minutes of the middle stanza when Charlie McAvoy’s point shot was deflected by Charlie Coyle. Bjork got the rebound and potted a gritty goal to make it 3-3.
But the Habs let the tie last just 42 seconds and Mete was able to get his second of the game to give Montreal the 4-3 lead.
Montreal outshot Boston 25-15 after 40 minutes of play.
HABS SNAP BRUINS’ WIN STREAK
The B’s had a crucial chance to tie things up just 16 seconds into the third period when they went on the power play, but were unable to find the back of the net. But things changed just a minute later.
After some puck battle behind the net, Chris Wagner got the puck to Kuraly down low who pushed it under Price’s pads to make it 4-4 at the 3:03 mark.
The Bruins appeared to take their first lead of the game just two minutes later when Zach Senyshyn, who was recalled from Providence earlier Tuesday, gobbled up a loose puck before tossing it over to Coyle who beat Price five-hole from the slot for the 5-4 lead. But Claude Julien challenged the call and it somehow was deemed offsides.
Montreal jumped back out in front with a Ben Chariot goal from the point that went under Rask’s glove for the 5-4 edge.
Boston never could recover, and its six-game win streak was snapped.
The Bruins will enjoy the next few days off before taking on the Detroit Red Wings on Friday night. Puck drop from Little Caesars Arena is set for 7:30 p.m. ET.