MONTREAL — A missed penalty shot by the Montreal's Artturi Lehkonen deflated the Canadiens and turned the game on its head.
The Canadiens failed to capitalize on a few early chances, including that penalty shot, as the Dallas Stars defeated the Montreal Canadiens 4-1 on Tuesday for their first road victory of the season.
"We came out well, hit two posts and we had that penalty shot before they even scored," said head coach Claude Julien. "That was our chance to play with the lead.
"It's too bad because we worked hard. The effort was there but the result just wasn't."
After Montreal outshot Dallas 10-2 in a scoreless first period, Lehkonen was awarded a penalty shot early in the second period — the first of his career — when John Klingberg slashed him on a breakaway. Lehkonen moved in with speed and tried going five-hole but Ben Bishop made the easy save.
"I was just trying to read his body language," said Bishop, who made 34 saves on the night. "I kind of had a sense that he was going to go five-hole. I just had a sense when he was coming down and what he was doing with the puck. I guess I was right that time."
Esa Lindell made Montreal pay exactly a minute later when he scored on Dallas' fourth shot of the game at 1:49 of the second. With Phillip Danault in the box for slashing, Devin Shore faked a shot then fed Lindell on an odd-man rush to give the visitors a 1-0 lead.
Later in the period, the Canadiens got caught on a line change and Dallas took advantage. Miro Heiskanen, the third overall draft pick in 2017, found himself unmarked near the blue line before beating Carey Price with a shot in the roof of the net at 7:24.
Shore led Dallas (6-5-0) with a goal and two assists for his first career three-point game.
Brendan Gallagher said Montreal's (6-3-2) response to adversity in the second period was "not good enough."
"They were the better team in the second," he said. "They got the two-goal lead and we weren't able to come back from that. You're going to deal with little bits of adversity throughout the year and you can't let yourself get frustrated. We have to do a better job of keeping our cool."
Down 2-0, Gallagher scored his team-leading seventh of the season three minutes into the third period. Bishop stopped Tomas Tatar's initial shot from the point but Gallagher was on the doorstep to knock in the rebound.
Dallas coach Jim Montgomery challenged the goal for goaltender interference but the referees determined Klingberg had knocked Gallagher into Bishop.
Shore put the game to bed with a short-handed goal at 9:27 for a 3-1 lead. A bad giveaway by Lehkonen behind his own goal gave the puck right to Shore, who chipped a backhander top corner past Price.
The 24-year-old Shore had five points in 10 games this season before adding three points on Tuesday.
"I tried to just skate and win as many battles as I could today," said Shore. "In the game of hockey, sometimes you're doing everything right and you can't buy one. Sometimes you play like crap and you get points. You try not to look at your points as a measure of success.
"But it feels good."
Alex Radulov, who played with the Canadiens two seasons ago, was back in the Stars lineup after missing four games with an undisclosed injury. He scored an empty-net goal with 2:37 left in the game.
Notes: After the game, Montreal sent forward Nikita Scherbak to the AHL Laval Rocket for "conditioning purposes." … Bishop improved to 12-4-3 all-time against the Canadiens. … Price stopped 18-of-21 shots in defeat. … Jason Spezza played in his 1,000th career NHL game. … The Stars have four games left on the six-game road trip.