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NHL playoffs: Dale Weise lifts Montreal over Tampa Bay in overtime

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Montreal Canadiens left wing Thomas Vanek (20), of Austria, celebrates with teammates Max Pacioretty (67) and David Desharnais (51) after scoring against the Tampa Bay Lightning during the third period of Game 1 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series on Wednesday, April 16, 2014, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

The Associated Press

First published Apr 16 2014 11:11PM
Updated Apr 16, 2014 11:18PM

Tampa, Fla. • Dale Weise scored 18:08 into overtime to give the Montreal Canadiens a 5-4 victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning in the opening game of their Eastern Conference quarterfinal playoff series on Wednesday night.

Daniel Briere passed from behind the net to Weise in the right circle, and he beat Anders Lindback for the winning score. Lindback stopped 39 of 44 shots while filling in for injured goaltender Ben Bishop.

Carey Price stopped 21 shots for the Canadiens, who blew a pair of third-period leads. Brian Gionta had a short-handed goal and Tomas Plekanec, Lars Eller and Thomas Vanek also scored for Montreal.

Steven Stamkos scored twice for Tampa Bay, including the goal that forced overtime.

Game 2 of the best-of-seven series is Friday night.

Three of the four regular-season meetings between the teams were decided in overtime or a shootout, while the fourth was clinched by an empty-net goal.

This one was just as tight, with the Lightning making the most of a limited number of opportunities against Price and the Canadiens overcoming a pair of one-goal deficits before squandering a pair of their own while outshooting Tampa Bay 35-16 in regulation.

Penguins 4, Blue Jackets 3 • In Pittsburgh, Brandon Sutter scored on a wrist shot from the left circle 8:18 into the third period, helping Pittsburgh rally past Columbus in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals.

Beau Bennett and Matt Niskanen scored power-play goals 45 seconds apart in the second period, erasing Pittsburgh’s two-goal deficit. Jussi Jokinen also scored for the Penguins and Marc-Andre Fleury overcame some shaky defense to stop 31 shots.

Game 2 is Saturday night.

Jack Johnson, Mark Letestu and Derek Mackenzie scored for the Blue Jackets, who fell to 0-5 all-time in postseason games. Sergei Bobrovsky finished with 28 saves but was handcuffed by Sutter’s knuckling wrister at the end of a 2-on-1 break.

Ducks 4, Stars 3 • In Anaheim, Calif., the Ducks scored three first-period goals, which they needed after Dallas rallied with two goals in the second and another in the third during Game 1 of the Western Conference quarterfinals.

Matt Beleskey scored the game-winner midway through the second period to put the Ducks ahead 4-0.

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