1706172862 The first goal hurt it was a gift

“The first goal hurt, it was a gift”

Like the team's fans, Martin St-Louis will want to quickly turn the page and focus on the next game between the Canadian and Patrick Roy and the New York Islanders on Thursday night at the Bell Centre.

In the meantime, the Habs head coach will remind his players that Christmas actually happened a month ago.

“When you give gifts in this league, it's hard to win,” St-Louis said Tuesday night after the Canadian's 4-1 loss to the Ottawa Senators.

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“The first goal hurt, it was a gift,” emphasized the coach and spoke about Ridly Greig’s goal, even though CH benefited from a power play.

The Canadian was outnumbered for the seventh time this season.

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“It sucks, we have to take care of the team when we are in this position,” admitted captain Nick Suzuki in the CH locker room. When you give a goal when you're outnumbered, it gives the opponent some rhythm. Giving away the first goal like that was bad.”

“You have to be prepared for dynamic changes in the game,” Sean Monahan said. It's never good to concede two goals at the start of the game. But you have to know how to get over it.”

Only three centers

In view of the recall of the Arber senators. In addition to Suzuki, Monahan and Jake Evans were there. They were used for 20 minutes or more each.

“The first goal hurt, it was a gift”

Getty Images via AFP

“It’s difficult for the wingers to get involved,” Suzuki agreed regarding this system used.

“We struggled to capitalize on the numerical advantage and that probably changed the situation,” the captain added to explain the defeat.

Pezzetta on the bench

St. Louis didn't make a big deal out of using only three centers.

“I wanted Pez on my bench against Ottawa,” he admitted, also referring to striker Michael Pezzetta.

This was the case as Pezzetta was used for a total of one minute and 57 seconds during the game.

For his part, Xhekaj spent more than 16 minutes on the ice in his first game with the Canadian since November 16, including more than two minutes on the power play.

“The first goal hurt, it was a gift”

Getty Images via AFP

Even though the Senators held a 3-0 lead before halftime of the game, “the Sheriff” didn’t throw away his gloves to create a spark.

“When they took a 3-0 lead they didn’t want to play my game, that was smart on their part,” commented Xhekaj.

(In collaboration with Jonathan Bernier)