from Stu Cowan of the Montreal Gazette,
Tomas Tatar doesn’t want the relationship to end.
For the last three seasons, Tatar’s regular linemates with the Canadiens have been Phillip Danault and Brendan Gallagher. But when the Canadiens play the Toronto Maple Leafs in Game 6 of their first-round playoff series Saturday at the Bell Centre (7:30 p.m., CBC, SN, TVA Sports, TSN 690 Radio, 98.5 FM) it could be the last time they ever play together.
The Canadiens are facing elimination for the second straight game after winning Game 5 by a 4-3 score in overtime Thursday night in Toronto. Tatar and Danault can both become unrestricted free agents at the end of the season and it seems unlikely they would both return with the Canadiens already up tight against the NHL salary cap. It’s also possible both of them will be gone.
“Honestly, I just want to enjoy every shift with Brendan and Phillip,” Tatar said Friday. “You never know when it’s going to be our last one. Both of us contracts expiring. NHL is a business. You can’t keep everyone. You have to make some decisions that have to be made at the end of the season. I had one of the best three years of my career, for sure, playing with these two guys. We were so close on and off the ice. Honestly, I just want to play as long as possible with them. So hopefully we can give it all tomorrow and we can play another game in this series. I just want to enjoy it with them. They are my great friends and we have become pretty close friends. So to me that’s something very special that was built here in Montreal with this team and I will probably never forget it.