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The Montreal Canadiens completed their sweep of the Winnipeg Jets in the Stanley Cup playoffs.
Tyler Toffoli powered the Habs to a 3-2 overtime victory on Monday at Bell Centre in Montreal. Cole Caufield fed Toffoli for the decisive goal with 1:39 off the clock in the extra period.
The win caps off a dominant series for the Canadiens, who didn’t trail for a single second against Winnipeg.
Tyler Toffoli, RW, Canadiens: one goal, one assist, three shots, one hit
Carey Price, Canadiens, G: 15 saves, .882 save percentage
Logan Stanley, D, Jets: two goals, three shots, three blocked shots, two hits
Connor Hellebuyck, G, Jets: 38 saves, .927 save percentage
Canadiens Start Strong, Finish Strong
The Canadiens outscored the Jets 11-4 through the first three games, and another one-sided result appeared to be in store through 20 minutes.
Erik Gustafsson put the Habs ahead with at the 8:01 mark.
With less than a minute left in the period, Artturi Lehkonen doubled Montreal’s advantage when he deflected Brett Kulak’s effort into the net.
Montreal’s inability to build on that wasn’t through a lack of trying.
Given the stakes for Winnipeg, the Jets weren’t going to go down lightly. They mucked things up quite a bit in the final two periods.
The Canadiens remained in the driver’s set for much of the game, though. It has been quite the turnaround from Dominique Ducharme’s squad from how it opened the playoffs against the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Jets Unable to Climb out of Early Hole (Again)
The Jets trailed 3-1 after the first period in Game 1, and they found themselves down 3-0 midway through the second period of Game 3. The same story played out Monday, only with a slightly different outcome.
Logan Stanley scored his first two goals of the postseason to bring the Jets level with Montreal in the second period. In both cases, Stanley took his time to line up a shot to beat Price.
The disparity in shot totals between the two teams was a warning sign for the Jets despite their comeback. Montreal had 25 shots on Hellebuyck, more than double Winnipeg’s 11.
The Canadiens proceeded to barrage Hellebuyck in the third period, and the Jets were doing little to slow down the rush. The Winnipeg netminder was the hardest working man on the ice Monday night.
Murat Ates @WPGMurat
Connor Hellebuyck doing his part, Logan Stanley with the goals, and Winnipeg can extend its season by winning a single period of play.
(Jets unblocked shots shown near their logo; Canadiens unblocked shots shown near their logo. All at 5v5, via @NatStatTrick) pic.twitter.com/ep0wEs3jxK
That kind of gulf in shots didn’t leave Winnipeg with much margin for error, and the resistance finally broke down in overtime.
The Canadiens are the first team to qualify for the Stanley Cup semifinals. Because the NHL will re-seed the four teams still alive in the next round, Montreal has to wait and to see who it will play.