Krug picks up 5 assists as Blues stomp Canadiens
MONTREAL (AP) — Jordan Kyrou scored twice and Torey Krug had five assists and the St. Louis Blues earned a 7-2 victory at the Montreal Canadiens on Super Bowl Sunday.
Robert Thomas had a goal and three assists, Jake Neighbours added a goal and one assist, while Colton Parayko, Alexey Toropchenko and Nathan Walker also scored for St. Louis. Jordan Binnington made 30 saves for the Blues.
“Pretty funny how that worked out,” Thomas said. “It’s our second time this year getting seven, so it’s always fun and everyone’s always happy leaving the rink.”
St. Louis has won seven of its past eight games.
“We’re really coming together on the ice as a group,” Kyrou said. “We kind of just all got a little swagger going on.”
Nick Suzuki and Joel Armia scored for Montreal, while Jake Allen stopped 29 shots. Suzuki extended his point streak to seven games while linemate Cole Caufield’s streak of 11 games came to an end.
The Canadiens lost their second in a row after a 3-2 loss to Dallas on Saturday and fell to 1-9-0 in the second game of back-to-backs this season.
“It’s never fun to get run out of the building, especially yours,” defenseman Jayden Struble said. “I thought there were a lot of bad bounces too that went against us but it’s not an excuse.”
Krug said he can’t remember ever getting five assists in a game, be it in the NHL, college or minor hockey.
“It’s a game that I’ll remember,” he said. “I love playing in this building, it’s my favorite building to play in the league.”
The Blues went 3-for-5 on the power play. The Canadiens were 0-for-3.
St. Louis took the lead early and never looked back.
Just 25 seconds into the game, Toropchenko cruised around Struble down the right wing with a deke between his legs before cutting to the net and beating Allen for a highlight-reel goal.
Parayko gave the Blues a 2-0 lead 5:05 into the first period with a point shot off the post and into the net.
Seconds later, Blues forward Sammy Blais had a hard hit on defenseman Jordan Harris while the latter was already falling along the end boards, appearing to connect near his head.
Harris also hit his head on the ice and couldn’t stand up after the incident, needing help to get off the ice. The Canadiens said he would not return because of an upper-body injury.
Blais, meanwhile, received a five-minute major for boarding and a game misconduct.
The Canadiens were unable to make the Blues pay until just after the five-minute power play expired, when Juraj Slafkovsky set Suzuki up with an open net after a cross-ice pass to cut the lead in half at 10:23.
Montreal’s 5-on-4 advantage was extended a few seconds, however, as St. Louis didn’t have anyone in the penalty box to take out.
Blues coach Drew Bannister explained he wanted to put someone in the box later in the penalty, but didn’t get a whistle.
“The guys were yelling to get a whistle, but I didn’t know why,” Binnington said. “Then I found out that we didn’t have a guy in the box. I’ve never seen that before.”
Kyrou scored a power-play goal at 15:20 of the first to give St. Louis a 3-1 lead heading into the break. Walker scored with 2:11 left in the period to put the Blues up by three.
Thomas added to that advantage with a power-play goal just 31 seconds into the third.
Armia got one back for Montreal at 3:06 with a deflection, but Neighbours regained the four-goal St. Louis lead with yet another power-play score at 7:14.
“We just gotta be more careful,” Suzuki said of Montreal’s penalties. “We can’t give that power play that many looks.”
Kyrou made it 7-2 with a shot that ricocheted off the end board and in off Allen.
The Canadiens said that forward Rafael Harvey-Pinard is out four to six weeks. Harvey-Pinard left Saturday’s game against the Dallas Stars after appearing to buckle his knee in a neutral zone collision with Armia early in the second period.
Harris is day to day with an upper-body injury.
Montreal defenseman Kaiden Guhle also appeared to hurt his left arm in the final minutes after a hit from Marco Scandella. The Canadiens said he was still being evaluated.
“Just scenario-wise, what was it, 6-2 at that point?” defenseman Mike Matheson said. “With a minute and some left, does this guy really need to drive him into the boards like that? I don’t know.”
Blues: at Toronto on Tuesday.
Canadiens: host Anaheim on Tuesday.
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