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Bruins choke on 2-0 lead in the third, lose to Montreal 3-2 in overtime

Max Pacioretty; Pk Subban

Montreal Canadiens’ Max Pacioretty, left, celebrates with teammate PK Subban after scoring the over-time winning goal to beat the Boston Bruins during an NHL hockey game game in Montreal, Canada on Saturday, Jan. 8, 2011. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press,Graham Hughes)


Bruins fans have to get tired of seeing things play out this way. Boston headed into the third period of their battle with the Canadiens with a 2-0 lead in Montreal as the Bruins looked to extend their lead in the Northeast Division. Instead, the Habs came out in the third period fired up, out-shooting the Bruins 18-8 and getting goals from Scott Gomez and Brian Gionta to tie the game up and go to overtime.

The Habs effort in the third period was something that was absent for the first 40 minutes of the game and something the Bruins couldn’t take full advantage of in that time span. Patrice Bergeron’s two goals early on provided the only offense the Bruins would see though. Max Pacioretty would end the game in overtime scoring the game-winner.

Pacioretty’s goal that touched off a meleé of sorts with Bruins captain Zdeno Chara going out of his mind and going after Pacioretty in a fit of frustration. Hal Gill intercepted Chara to even out the height discrepancy and cool things off. For Boston, Chara’s frustration is emblematic of what it’s been like of late for them. They’re getting their points by reaching overtime and the shootout, but finishing games off has been an issue.

With the win in overtime, Montreal tied the Bruins atop the Northeast Division. The catch there is that it alters your playoff position by four or five spots going from third in the conference to seventh or eighth. We’re far off from worrying about the playoffs, but this kind of jockeying looks likely to go on all year long.