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Martin Jones blanks Canadiens, Kraken win 5th straight

Jan 9, 2023; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Seattle Kraken forward Eeli Tolvanen (20) scores a goal against Montreal Canadiens goalie Sam Montembeault (35) during the first period at the Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports

Matty Beniers, Vince Dunn and Eeli Tolvanen each had a goal and an assist, and Martin Jones needed to make just 21 saves for his second shutout of the season as the visiting Seattle Kraken won their fifth in a row, 4-0 over the Montreal Canadiens on Monday night.

Daniel Sprong recorded his 13th goal and Yanni Gourde posted two assists for the Kraken, who have outscored their opponents 26-8 while winning all five January contests, including the first four — all in Canada — of a season-high seven-game road stretch. Jones, among the NHL leaders with 19 wins, was not tested often thanks to some stellar defensive play in front. He was solid nonetheless in allowing two or fewer goals for the fourth time in five starts and posting his 27th career shutout.

Jones’ other shutout this season came in a 4-0 victory at Minnesota on Nov. 3.

Meanwhile, Sam Montembeault stopped 37 shots for the Canadiens, who were unable to build on Saturday’s 5-4 victory over St. Louis that snapped their 0-6-1 slide. Montreal, which has just two wins and five points in its last 13 contests, failed to record double-digit shots in any period while being shut out for the third time this season. The Canadiens have also allowed at least four goals in eight consecutive games.

Seattle was the aggressor from the start, recording seven shots on goal through the first three minutes. The Kraken were eventually awarded for the effort when Tolvanen one-timed a cross-crease pass from the defenseman Dunn for the opening score just 6:54 into the contest.

The visitors made it 2-0 when Sprong one-timed a seam pass from Andre Burakovsky for a power-play goal with 9:59 remaining in the opening frame. Seattle added on in the first when Dunn sent the puck through traffic, and appeared to deflect off a Montreal skate and past Montembeault with 5:40 to go before the first intermission.

Seattle outshot the Canadiens 19-6 in the first period.

Beniers’ empty-net tally with 63 seconds to play was his 15th goal of the season, and fourth in four games.

–Field Level Media