Brayden Schenn understood that when the St. Louis Blues kept controlling games their winless run would end sooner or later.
The Blues star centre took care of business himself by scoring three goals to lift the Blues to a 4-3 victory over the Montreal Canadiens on Tuesday night which ended a string of three consecutive games without a win.
“We played well as a group,” stated Schenn. “I thought we had a fantastic match in Minnesota the last match we played with (a 2-1 overtime loss on Saturday) and just did not get the outcome we wanted.
“I thought it transitioned over to tonight and we could come out with two things in a tough building to play”
Scottie Upshall also scored for St. Louis (18-8-2), which outshot the Canadiens 30-25 and had the advantage in play for the majority of the game in each area except in goal, where Montreal’s Carey Price made some brilliant stops and the Blues’ Jake Allen got beat 3 times by defencemen in the blue line.
Schenn’s next goal, which broke a tie with 7:49 left to play, was no fault of Price’s. The Blues star threw the pass in front intended for Jaden Schwartz and saw the puck go in off defenceman David Schlemko’s skate.
“I put up my arms in the air and asked Schwartzy at the huddle if it was his or not,” said Schenn. “He said ‘I do not know whether it went (Shea) Weber or another D-man’s skate.’ But I’ll definitely take those blessed targets.”
Weber scored twice and Jordie Benn also had a goal for Montreal (13-13-3), which ended a five-game winning streak and also saw Price drop for the first time in six games since returning from a lower-body injury.
Weber’s first goal was his 500th career point. It arrived in his 100th match for Montreal since his trade out of Nashville in 2016.
Benn scored for another game in a row and tied a career high with his fourth of the year. The long-bearded defenceman has six goals in 41 games for Montreal since coming in a trade late last season. He had 11 goals in 302 games for Dallas.
“The ideal items at the right time I guess,” said Benn. “It’s only a confidence thing I guess.”
Superior work from the Montreal zone resulted in the Blues’ opening goal at 5:00 as Schwartz setup Schenn from behind the web to get a one-timer towards the top corner.
The Canadiens did not get their first shot on target until after the 12-minute mark, but it did not take long to score as Benn’s point shot through traffic obtained by Allen at 15:28.
“I walked the blue line and I saw a tiny lane and let her go,” said Benn. “I couldn’t find the net.
“I could not even find the goalie, there were so many men in front.”
The Blues owned the whole second period, but had just a brief minute to score twice as Upshall completed a rush with Dmitrij Jaskin at 2:32 and Schenn took a feed in the Montreal blue line from Alex Pietrangelo and went in alone to conquer Price at 2:39.
Andy McDonald and David Backes kept the Blues team listing with targets six minutes apart from 2010, however.
Andrew Shaw won a draw back to Weber for a low shot that curled inside the right place at 17:04. Shaw won another draw back to Weber for another minimal blast that went through Allen’s legs to tie the match 6:34 to the third.
Allen abandoned midway through the second time to have a skate blade fixed after making a save. Backup Carter Hutton didn’t face a shot in 3:27 of work before Allen returned.
“I attempted to get up and I dropped,” said Allen. “I’d no blades left.
“My bolts both broke from my blades. They had no equipment in the seat. I really had to wear another pair (of skates).
Montreal’s Jonathan Drouin sat out with an illness after missing the past two games with an injury.
Courtesy: The Globe And Mail