The Montreal Canadiens and their home town fans must really hate Florida Panthers star forward Aleksander Barkov.
The Habs welcomed the Panthers to the Bell Center in Montreal on Sunday night and although it is a home game for the Habs you would be hard pressed to argue that it's not Barkov who feels most at home in Montreal. The Florida Panthers star has dominated the Montreal Canadiens in their own building with both of his career 4 point games coming against the Habs and both of them coming in the Habs own building.
It was a rough night for the Canadiens who started veteran goaltender Antti Niemi in net on the evening, a decision that would prove very costly indeed for the Habs. Niemi would face just 9 shots in total during the course of the game before getting yanked after having allowed 3 goals on those nine shots, forcing the Canadiens to bring in Carey Price who was likely hoping to have a night off. Price performed much better than Niemi in net recording a very respectable .923 save percentage on the evening but unfortunately he will be on all the highlight reels tomorrow morning for all the wrong reasons.
That's because Price was the man in net when Barkov absolutely styled on the Canadiens with what will undoubtedly be a contender for best goal of the 2018 - 2019 National Hockey League regular season. Barkov was engaged in a very tight race for the puck and created a partial breakaway for himself the process, but it was both the poise and the skill he put on display that left everyone in the building and all the fans watching at home with their jaws hanging down to the floor.
In spite of having a man basically hanging off of his back and in spite of having very little space to work his magic and in spite of facing off against arguably the best goaltender in the world in the form of Carey Price Barkov managed to pull off an beauty. The Panthers star tucked the puck between his legs and, in a move that will bring back memories of Tomas Hertl's 4 goal performance against the Rangers, fired it up high to beat Price.