MONTREAL — Right winger Brian Flynn scored a goal and added two assists to lead the Montreal Canadiens to a 4-3 win over the Ottawa Senators on Wednesday night in Game 1 of their quarterfinal playoff series.
Flynn is a former University of Maine standout who played for the Black Bears from 2008-12.
Goaltender Carey Price stopped 30 shots for the Canadiens. Netminder Andrew Hammond made 35 saves for the Senators.
Centers Torrey Mitchell, Tomas Plekanec and Lars Eller also scored for the Canadiens.
Left winger Milan Michalek and centers Kyle Turris and Mika Zibanejad replied for Ottawa.
The Senators benefited from a mistake by defenseman Andrei Markov to notch the first goal of the series. A shot from Michalek bounced off the end boards to Price’s right. Markov, right in front of his goalie, got his stick on the puck with the intention of pushing it over to Price to stop the play. But the Montreal netminder was upright, and the puck went through his legs at 12:25 of the first period.
Mitchell brought the Bell Centre to life when he tied it at 7:53 of the second period. Hammond stopped Flynn’s shot but was on his far right when Mitchell picked up the rebound and tucked in the wraparound on the left side.
Plekanec gave Montreal its first lead of the night 15 seconds later on a 2-on-1 with right winger Brendan Gallagher. Left winger Alex Galchenyuk got defenseman Erik Karlsson off his game with a hit, and the Senators captain missed the puck going by him, setting up the breakout and Plekanec’s shot from the left circle.
A five-minute major to defenseman P.K. Subban — after he slashed right winger Mark Stone — allowed Ottawa to tie it on the power play at 10:36 shortly after a 5-on-3 in their favor expired. Turris’ shot from the left circle went in under the crossbar but came out so quickly, a review was required to confirm the goal.
Subban was also given a game misconduct. Stone went to the room but returned later in the frame.
Montreal regained its lead just over a minute later on the same Ottawa power play. Flynn, at the Senators’ blue line, got the puck over to Eller, who broke in and lifted the puck over Hammond.
Still on the power play, Zibanejad tied it at 12:36. Price saved defenseman Patrick Wiercioch’s shot from the circle but the puck bounced out to the Senators winger, and he tossed it far side behind the Canadiens netminder.
Flynn made it 4-3 at 17:17. Left winger Brandon Prust took the rebound of defenseman Nathan Beaulieu’s point shot and got it over to Flynn. The winger kicked the puck up to his stick and skated around in front of Hammond before tucking it under the goalie’s pad.
It marked just the third time Hammond has given up at least four goals in a game.
Islanders 4, Capitals 1
WASHINGTON — Center Brock Nelson, right winger Ryan Strome and left winger Josh Bailey all scored their first career playoff goals and goaltender Jaroslav Halak stopped 24 of 25 shots to lead the New York Islanders to a series-opening 4-1 victory over the Washington Capitals on Wednesday night.
Nelson completed his night by slam dunking an empty-netter with 1:19 to play for his second goal of the game.
The Islanders are looking for their first playoff series victory since 1993 and started this one in convincing fashion, outshooting the Capitals 27-25 and controlling the play for long stretches.
Winger Marcus Johansson scored the lone goal for the Capitals, who, like the Islanders, are returning to the playoffs after a one-year absence.
The Islanders’ speed was evident throughout the game and their precise passing did not allow the NHL’s biggest team to get its forechecking game on track.
The Islanders held left winger Alex Ovechkin and the NHL’s top-ranked power play off the scoreboard, thwarting a pair of Capitals man advantages.
Game 2 of the series will take place on Friday night at the Verizon Center in Washington.
The Islanders didn’t take long to take the first lead of the series, converting a Capitals neutral zone turnover into Nelson’s first playoff goal 6:06 into the game. Johansson turned the puck over when a pass from right winger Troy Brouwer went off his skate and caromed to Islanders defenseman Johnny Boychuk. Boychuk quickly sent the puck up to left winger Josh Bailey, who fed Nelson in full stride. Nelson whipped a snap shot that beat Washington goaltender Braden Holtby past his catching glove on the Isles’ third shot.
The Capitals responded in the closing minute of the opening period when left winger Brooks Laich stripped Halak of the puck behind the net and fed Johansson, whose wrister beat Halak past his blocker with 56 seconds remaining.
The Islanders outshot the Capitals 11-7 in the opening period and took control in the second period on goals by Strome and Bailey. Strome, playing in his first career playoff game, gave the Islanders a 2-1 lead 3:50 into the period when Islanders captain John Tavares beat Capitals rookie Michael Latta on an offensive zone faceoff. Strome’s quick release beat Holtby through a screen.
The Islanders made it 3-1 midway through the second period when Bailey jammed his own rebound off Holtby, off the post and over the goal line. Right winger Kyle Okposo fed Bailey with a nice pass through the crease to pick up the assist.