Hapless Habs unravel against Oilers for 8th consecutive loss – CBC.ca
It’s a goal Alex Chiasson won’t soon forget.
Chiasson scored the third-period winner to give the Edmonton Oilers a 4-2 comeback victory over the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday night, extending their win streak to three games. The Oilers winger grew up in Laval, Que., a short drive from Montreal, and idolized the Canadiens as a boy.
“I’ve always dreamed of getting one here,” said Chiasson of Bell Centre. “I grew up a Habs fan. My mom and dad used to bring my sister and me to games here. It’s always special coming into this building.”
The Oilers (24-17-5) overcame a 2-0 deficit and put four unanswered past Carey Price, including three in the third period.
Riley Sheahan went top corner on Price to make it 2-1 at 7:16 of the second. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins tied the game at 2:16 of the third, on the power play, on a feed from Connor McDavid.
Edmonton took its first lead seven minutes later when Chiasson redirected Oscar Klefbom’s shot off the post and in, just out of Price’s reach.
“I’ve had better opportunities to score than this one, but I’ll take it,” said Chiasson. “I’ll remember this one for a long time.”
WATCH | McDavid pushes league-best point total to 70 in road win:
Price stopped 22-of-25 shots while falling to 3-9-1 lifetime against Edmonton.
Josh Archibald added the empty-netter with 35 seconds on the clock and the Oilers improved to 3-0-1 on their current five-game road trip.
“Play harder and execute harder — when we started doing that, we gave ourselves a chance,” said Tippett. “Before that, they were a desperate team, they were a quicker team. They were on loose pucks and executing and we weren’t.
“We had to play better if we were going to win. We played better in the third period and gave ourselves a chance.”
The Canadiens (18-20-7) have dropped eight straight games for the second time this season. Montreal also lost eight in a row (0-5-3) from Nov. 16 to Dec. 1. The team is now nine points out of a wild-card spot.
“We can’t give up,” said coach Claude Julien. “We can’t hang our heads. We’re paid to do a job and we have to keep doing it. We’re running out of answers.
“We haven’t thrown the towel in as individuals or as a team. We show up every game and compete. A mistake here and there ends up in our net. An opportunity we should have buried doesn’t go in. Those are the challenges we have.”
WATCH | 9 incredible goals from this season… in 90 seconds:
It started well for the Canadiens, who have been good at creating offence on the rush this season and it led to the game’s first goal.
Tomas Tatar crossed the Edmonton blue line with speed and dropped the puck to Phillip Danault. The first-line centre fired a shot off Mike Smith’s pad before netting the rebound glove side at 12:35 of the first.
Another fast break led to Montreal’s second goal. Artturi Lehkonen entered the zone and found an unmarked Jesperi Kotkaniemi, who beat Smith with a quick-release wrist shot at 2:24 of the second.
Brendan Gallagher was back in the lineup for the Canadiens after missing the last four games with a concussion. The right-winger was injured on Dec. 31 when he collided with teammate Ben Chiarot.
Montreal nearly took a 3-1 lead late in the second when Gallagher fought off three Oilers before springing Nate Thompson on a breakaway. Thompson went from his forehand to his backhand and beat Smith but fired the puck off the post.
Smith had 35 saves in his fourth consecutive start between the pipes.
“It’s a mental battle right now, it’s the psychology of it,” said Gallagher. “There’s probably a little ‘poor me’ going through us right now, when really we’re in control. It shouldn’t matter what’s happened in the past. You have to put that behind you and find a way to win a hockey game.”
Blue Jays cut ties with pitcher Anthony Bass amid backlash over anti-LGBTQ social media post – CBC Sports
Reliever Anthony Bass has been designated for assignment by the Toronto Blue Jays.
It’s the latest development in a controversy that began last week when Bass shared a social media post that supported anti-LGBTQ boycotts.
Bass, who made a public apology last week for the post, had been scheduled to catch the ceremonial first pitch by LGBTQ advocate leZlie Lee Kam when the Jays hosted Minnesota on Friday night to kick off their Pride Weekend.
The Blue Jays said pitcher Kevin Gausman would catch the first pitch instead.
WATCH | ‘Distraction’ of Bass saga a factor in parting ways:
The decision to include Bass was met with criticism by some on social media.
Bass has a 0-0 record and 4.95 earned-run average over 22 appearances this season.
Toronto called up right-hander Mitch White in a corresponding roster move.
Bass had shared a since-deleted video post urging others to spurn Target and Bud Light over the support they showed for the LGBTQ community.
He said in a scrum that he initially did not think the video post — which described the selling of Pride-themed merchandise as “evil” and “demonic” — was hateful.
“That’s why I posted it originally,” he said. “When I look back at it, I can see how people can view it that way and that’s why I was apologetic.”
WATCH | Bass apologizes for Instagram post:
Before Friday’s game, Blue Jays general manager Ross Atkins said the decision to cut Bass was primarily motivated by performance and not by the pitcher’s off-the-field circumstances.
“There’s a myriad of variables,” Atkins said. “Performance is usually the driving one and performance was a large aspect of this decision. Distraction was a small part of it and something we had to factor in.”
Atkins refused to say whether Bass would still be on the team if his performance had been better.
“We’re trying to build the best possible team we can build,” Atkins said. “This was a baseball decision to make our team better.”
Atkins also said it was not “a realistic option” for Bass to land in Toronto’s minor league system.
“We won’t stand in his way to be with another organization,” Atkins said.
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Stanley Cup Final: Matthew Tkachuk exits after huge hit, returns to send Game 3 to OT
Matthew Tkachuk is well-known around the NHL for his elite combination of skill and grit, one of the few superstars in the league who can affect the game in a variety of ways.
Tkachuk got a taste of his own medicine in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final on Thursday night when Vegas Golden Knights forward Keegan Kolesar caught him with a crushing hit in open ice early in the first period.
Tkachuk was slow to get up, stumbling to his feet before slowly skating over to the Panthers’ bench.
The 25-year-old remained in the game for his next shift on the power play, but was visibly uncomfortable. After speaking with trainers on the bench, Tkachuk was seen heading down the tunnel and remained there for the first of the opening frame. While the immediate concern for Tkachuk was a head injury, he was seen favouring his right shoulder on the bench.
He returned to play early in the second period and would finish the game.
And, as he has all playoffs long, Tkachuk came up clutch for the Panthers once again, despite being battered and bruised, tying the game at two goals apiece late in the third period to send Game 3 to overtime.
Florida would go on to win the game in overtime after Carter Verhaeghe‘s shot found its way to the back of the net with none other than Matthew Tkachuk screening Vegas goaltender Adin Hill.
Tkachuk dished out arguably the biggest hit of the postseason in Game 2 when his flattened Vegas star forward Jack Eichel in the second period.
Eichel would eventually return to the game and add an assist to his team-leading 22 points in the playoffs.
Tkachuk leads the Panthers in points with 24, playing a pivotal role in Florida’s unlikely run to the Stanley Cup Final.
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