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A sore defeat, but Habs are ready to focus on Game 3

MONTREAL – It was a disappointing night at the Bell Centre as the Montreal Canadiens lost Game 2 of the Eastern Conference semi-finals 6-2 to the Tampa Bay Lightning.

The post-game mood in the locker room was pretty sour.

“We took some really, really bad penalties. At the end of the first period I thought we were perfect,” said Canadiens head coach Michel Therrien.

It clearly isn’t just physical anymore – it’s also a mental game.

The Habs haven’t been able to beat the Lightning at all this year – a huge change after sweeping them in the first round of the playoffs last year.

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“If we want to have an opportunity in the series to go up, we have to battle ourselves out of this hole that we’re in,” said P.K. Subban, Habs defenceman.

“We were a better team out there first period, we just didn’t carry it down to the rest of the game,” added Tomas Plekanec, Canadiens center.

WATCH: Habs fans give their predictions

There was one thing everyone was talking about as the game ended – the amount of time Canadiens’ Brandon Prust spent in the penalty box.

Ten separate calls for a total of 31 minutes.

That’s the same number of penalties as the entire Tampa Bay team combined.

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“Clearly it works in our favour when that happens, but I’m sure it’s just frustration setting in,” said Jon Cooper, Tampa Bay’s head coach.

Prust claims things even got heated between him and referee Brad Watson.

“He kept provoking me and he came over to the box and called me every name in the book,” said Prust.

“He called me a piece of you know what, coward, said he’d drive me right out of this building. That’s the kind of ref he is. He tries to play God. He tries to control the game.”

The Habs have a few days off before Game 3 on Wednesday in Tampa Bay.

“We’re going to their building. They like playing at home obviously, they have a great crowd, they’re going to try and get them in the game,” said Max Pacioretty, Canadiens forward.

From now until then, every Habs fan will have their fingers crossed that their beloved team will be able to make it through to the next round.

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rachel.lau@globalnews.ca

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