It was a terrible night for the Montreal Canadiens, particularly for goaltender Al Montoya. The Habs lost their first regulation game of the season in spectacular fashion, falling 10-0 to the Columbus Blue Jackets. The game tied the franchise record for the biggest margin of defeat in Montreal history. This was the fifth time the Habs have dropped a game by ten, most recently in an 11-1 loss to Detroit in 1995.
The Blue Jackets fired their legendary cannon eleven times — one goal was disallowed — much to the thrill of the hometown fans.
Through it all, Montoya remained on the ice. Michel Therrien refused to pull his netminder, offering number one goaltender Carey Price a full night of rest before his scheduled start against the Flyers on Saturday.
While Montoya may not have had much help from Price, his coach, or his teammates — who offered no offensive support — he did get some reassurance from veteran linesman Vaughan Rody, who took a moment to share some words with Montoya.
“[It was a] tough night for him for sure; he handled that though like a true professional,” Rody said on Saturday. “Seriously, at moments like those, it’s all about trying to be as positive as you can for him and making certain goal celebrations are kept at a minimum and moved along from his crease as quickly as possible.”
A tough one, but kudos for the officials for doing what they could to soften the blow.
If only they could’ve quieted that cannon.