Canadiens showcase offensive balance as 7 players score in win over Devils

Kale Clague had a goal and two assists, Cole Caufield and Nick Suzuki each had a goal and an assist as a part of a three-goal first period and the Montreal Canadiens beat the New Jersey Devils 7-4 on Thursday night in Newark, N.J.

Christian Dvorak and Chris Wideman each had a goal and two assists, while Joel Armia and Jake Evans also scored for the Canadiens. Jake Allen stopped 33 shots to help Montreal win for the second time in three games.

Jesper Bratt, Ty Smith, Tomas Tatar and AJ Greer scored for New Jersey. Andrew Hammond allowed six goals on 19 shots before he was pulled early in the third period. The Devils dropped their fifth straight game, and 10th in their past 12, going 0-3-1 on their four-game homestand.

Montreal built a 3-1 first-period advantage, then relied heavily on Allen the rest of the way. The goalie made 14 saves in the second period and 18 during a two-period span of 18:44 where New Jersey outshot Montreal 19-2.

Greer cut Montreal’s lead to 3-2 with five minutes left in the second period with his first goal in his seventh career game with the Devils. Armia restored Montreal’s two-goal advantage 1:20 later.

Wideman and Dvorak scored goals 15 seconds apart early in the third period to chase Hammond. He fell to 0-1-1 in a pair of starts since joining the Devils in a trade with the Canadiens on March 21.

WATCH | Canadiens hand Devils 5th consecutive loss:

No holding back as Habs defeat Devils

32 minutes ago

Duration 0:40

Habs Chris Wideman had a 3 point night including the winner as Montreal easily handled New Jersey 7-4. 0:40

Smith and Bratt each scored to get New Jersey within 6-4, but Clague’s goal at 13:17 stymied any threat of a comeback.

Suzuki and Evans put Montreal ahead with first-period goals 2:06 apart. Suzuki fielded a pass from linemate Rem Pitlick and beat Hammond over the glove, giving the Canadiens a 1-0 lead.

Evans made it 2-0 after defenceman Corey Schueneman won a board battle then fed Montreal’s second-line centre at the point for a blast that beat Hammond over the glove at 6:41.

Tatar, who played the past three seasons for Montreal before signing a free agent contract with the Devils in August, put New Jersey on the board with his 14th goal 30 seconds after Evans’ goal. He took a pass from linemate Dawson Mercer and beat Allen, making it 2-1 at 7:11.

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