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Canadiens 6, Penguins 5 (SO)

The SportsXchange

PITTSBURGH -- In a seesaw battle, the Montreal Canadiens edged the Pittsburgh Penguins 6-5 in a shootout at CONSOL Energy Center on Thursday night.

Canadiens center Daniel Briere scored twice in regulation, and center David Desharnais collected the only goal in the shootout.

The play was sloppy, especially on the parts of the goaltenders. There also were 11 combined penalties, and each team converted twice with the man-advantage.

Pittsburgh was 8-2 in its previous 10 games against Montreal heading into Thursday.

The Penguins blew two third-period leads.

Defenseman P.K. Subban drew a slashing call against Pittsburgh center Evgeni Malkin to put the Canadiens on the power play early in the third. However, Subban subsequently had his pocket picked by Pittsburgh center Brandon Sutter, who broke in alone on a breakaway and backhanded a shot past Montreal goalie Peter Budaj for a short-handed tally to put Pittsburgh ahead 4-3.

Just 24 seconds later, Canadiens defenseman Alexei Emelin threw a shot on net from the blue line that snuck inside the left post to pull the game even once again, 4-4.

The Penguins score their fifth goal of the night on the power play when a slap shot by Evgeni Malkin deflected right to the stick of fellow forward Sidney Crosby, who wristed the puck past a down-and-out Budaj at 12:29 of the third.

In what could only be described as an incorrect penalty call, Pittsburgh left winger Tanner Glass was given a five-minute major for elbowing Emelin. Replays showed that Emelin was injured by his own stick. Montreal wasted little time in converting when Briere got his second of the game by tapping in a loose rebound inside the left post to knot the game at 5 at 14:06 of the third.

Right winger Brendan Gallagher and left winger Max Pacioretty also scored for Montreal.

Left winger James Neal and defensemen Deryk Engelland and Olli Maatta added goals for Pittsburgh.

Bedaj made 27 saves, while Penguins goalie Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 24 shots.

NOTES: Thursday's game marked the first of 17 games in 32 days, through the end of March, for the Penguins. ... For Montreal, Thursday's game marked the completion of its 13th set back-to-back games. The Canadiens have four more back-to-back sequences remaining. ... Pittsburgh C Evgeni Malkin extended his points streak to six games. ... Pittsburgh has lost 356 man-games to injury, while Montreal has lost 204. ... Scratches for the Penguins were D Simon Despres, D Paul Martin (broken hand) and D Kris Letang (stroke). Scratches for the Canadiens were G Carey Price (lower body), D Francis Bouillon and C Ryan White. ... Pittsburgh next will play against the Chicago Blackhawks outdoors at Soldier Field on Saturday night. Montreal also will be in action on Saturday night when it hosts the Toronto Maple Leafs. ... The official attendance was 18,636, Pittsburgh's 315th consecutive sellout.

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