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09.08.2018 08:26
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Montreal coach Claude Julien acknowledged the Canadiens can benefit by losing Frank Ragnow Color Rush Jersey , increasing their chances in the NHL draft lottery.

Julien, though, insisted coaches and players are wired to win and refuse to compete with any other goal in mind.

Nicolas Deslauriers‘ second goal put Montreal ahead late in the second period and they held on to beat the Detroit Red Wings 4-3 on Thursday night.

The Original Six teams are out of the playoff race, finishing up the season playing only for pride.

”Both teams want to win. It’s engrained in us,” Julien said. ”I’ve been told – I can honestly tell you – to try to win every game we can.”

Antti Niemi had 23 saves for the Canadiens, started in place of struggling star Carey Price.

Detroit’s Jared Coreau stopped 24 shots, giving Jimmy Howard the night off.

Montreal took advantage of the Red Wings turning the puck over, including early in the third period when Artturi Lehkonen scored to create a two-goal cushion.

”We’re always trying to force turnovers and play a fastbreak game,” Lehkonen said. ”We got some opportunities and we did a good job finishing them.”

Darren Helm scored less than a minute later to pull Detroit within a goal Brent Suter Milwaukee Brewers Jersey , but it couldn’t’ score again to extend the game.

Montreal had won just two of its previous 10 games and will miss the playoffs for the second time in three years.

”I’m not used to losing. I don’t like to lose,” Julien said. ”But at the same time, I have to be objective and look at the situation and there were some challenges along the way that we didn’t expect, a number of injuries, and players having to move up in the lineup in areas they weren’t quite ready for.”

The Red Wings have lost two straight and 15 of their last 19 games. They will be relegated to watching the postseason for a second consecutive season after earning a spot in the playoffs 25 straight times.

”We’ve found ways to lose too many times this year,” Detroit defenseman Jonathan Ericsson said. ”We lost a lot of one-goal games after leading games in the third. And, it’s just not acceptable that we didn’t close out more games.”

The storied franchises hope they’re fortunate enough to get the No. 1 pick overall to likely draft Swedish defenseman Rasmus Dahlin.

Detroit wants to rebuild around Dylan Larkin, who split two Canadiens on a rush and beat Niemi with a backhander late in the first to make it 1-all after Deslauriers had his first goal early in the game.

”Dylan continues to build his game,” Detroit coach Jeff Blashill said. ”That goal Authentic Saquon Barkley Jersey , I think, is a good sign for us.”

Tyler Bertuzzi put the Red Wings ahead early in the second, but they lost the lead as they have many times this season.

Brendan Gallagher pulled the Canadiens into a tie midway through the second period and Deslauriers’ 10th put them ahead with 5:21 left in the period.

”It’s been a tough year so this was a nice bonus at the end of the year,” Deslauriers said.

NOTES: Montreal D Jeff Petry was cheered on by at least one fan in the stands. His father, Dan Petry, an 18-game winner for the 1984 World Series champion Detroit Tigers, attended the game. … Coreau, who has spent much of the season in the AHL, is 0-5 with the Red Wings this season. … Gallagher has a team-high 31 goals Authentic Saquon Barkley Jersey , a double-digit lead over the rest of his teammates and seven more goals than he scored in any of his previous five seasons. … Larkin has a five-game points streak.

UP NEXT

Canadiens: Wrap up the season Saturday night at Toronto.

Red Wings: End the season at home against the New York Islanders on Saturday night.



The best formula for success against the New England Patriots is to keep Tom Brady on the sideline and harass him when he’s on the field.

That’s not a news flash. But the good news for Eagles fans and everyone rooting against Brady, Bill Belichick and the Patriots in Sunday’s Super Bowl is that Philadelphia has the ingredients to do it.

The Eagles (15-3) have a multidimensional, ball-control offense capable of chewing the clock and forcing No. 12 to be a spectator.

Jay Ajayi, former Patriots running back LeGarrette Blount and Corey Clement led the NFL’s third-best rushing offense and the Eagles were first in time of possession.

”You have to stay patient and diligent there,” Eagles coach Doug Pederson said. ”That’s something we’ve been able to do all season long. It’s something we stay committed to.”

This isn’t an old-school, ground-and-pound offense, either.

The Eagles have a versatile passing attack with several receivers who create matchup problems. Carson Wentz threw for 3,296 yards and 33 touchdown passes before he tore his ACL in Week 14 and Nick Foles has eight TD passes, including playoffs.

Foles proved in the NFC championship game he can make quick-strike plays with three passes of 40-plus yards against the league’s top-ranked defense. Two of those were TD tosses of 53 yards to Alshon Jeffery and 41 yards to Torrey Smith.

Pro Bowl tight end Zach Ertz and slot receiver Nelson Agholor are other options. Tight end Trey Burton Mark Andrews Color Rush Jersey , who also lines up at fullback in certain short-yardage situations, had five TD catches this season.

”You can’t just stop one guy,” Patriots safety Devin McCourty said. ”You can’t go out there and say, `if we just limit Jeffery or if we just limit Ertz that won’t matter.’ They have a lot of different guys out there that can beat you.”

Foles has been adept at making the right calls on run-pass option plays, making it even more difficult for defenses facing Philadelphia.

”It’s hard because you have to defend every inch of the field,” McCourty said. ”Each guy has to do their job on the play. We can’t have guys doing things that don’t fit the defense.”

On the opposite side of the ball, defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz has an aggressive unit. Nobody runs on Philadelphia’s defense. It was No. 1 against the run and didn’t allow a 100-yard rusher until Ezekiel Elliott had 103 in Week 17 against backups and third-stringers.

The Patriots (15-3) rely mainly on Brady’s arm, even though Dion Lewis had 896 yards rushing and James White was a Super Bowl hero last year. But Brady can’t throw if he doesn’t have time and the Eagles have a dominant front four led by Fletcher Cox and Brandon Graham.

The line often generates enough pressure that Schwartz doesn’t have to blitz much and there’s enough depth with Chris Long, Vinny Curry Alex McGough Color Rush Jersey , Tim Jernigan and Beau Allen that guys stay fresh in the fourth quarter.

Safety Malcolm Jenkins is a physical presence in the secondary and cornerbacks Ronald Darby and Jalen Mills are solid cover guys.

”They have a great defense,” Brady said. ”It’s as good any we’ve faced all year. They have a great scheme that mixes in well with their coverages.”

If the game comes down to a field goal, rookie kicker Jake Elliott has a strong leg. He kicked a 61-yarder at the end of regulation to beat the Giants in Week 3 and is 6 of 7 from beyond 50 yards.

The Eagles shouldn’t be tight and they’re not intimidated by the Patriots. They’re a loose, relaxed group that has embraced their underdog role throughout the playoffs and overcame injuries to several key players.

”Greatest quarterback of all time, but that doesn’t mean that he’s unbeatable,” Jenkins said of Brady. ”We’re not worried. We match up well.”



AP NFL website: .

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