The scene in Montreal was crazy following their team's win, which sends them into the final round of the Stanley Cup playoffs for the first time in 28 years.
Despite barely making the playoffs, the Montreal Canadiens are now getting set to play for the Stanley Cup. Lead by their star netminder, Carey Price, the Canadiens fought hard and defeated the top-seated Toronto Maple Leafs, then the Winnipeg Jets, and now the Vegas Golden Knights.
Thursday's Game 6 showdown was one for the books. Down in the series 3-2, the Golden Knights knew they had to win to keep themselves alive. Both teams fought hard, and were tied 2-2 after regulation. Sudden death overtime was needed for the third consecutive time in the series, and this time the stakes were higher than ever for Montreal.
Less than 2 minutes into the extra frame, Artturi Lehkonen scored on a pass from Denault, sending his team to the Stanley Cup final.
Fans in Centre Bell erupted in jubilation, as did those watching on the big screen outside. People poured into the streets, where the scene quickly descended into chaos—not quite Vancouver 2011 level, but chaotic nonetheless.
The festivities soon turned violent, with reports of an "armed assault on a police officer," and the flipping of a police vehicle. According to CTV News, 15 arrests have thus far been made, some for the aforementioned acts, but other for "violations against municipal fireworks regulations." Some members of the "rowdy crowds" were dispersed with tear gas.
As CTV reports, in anticipation of the chaos following a victory of such proportions, the 3,500 fans in Centre Bell were told by police to stay inside momentarily as a precaution. "Police have asked us to stay inside tonight until they advise us we can leave," said Canadiens owner Geoff Molson to the crowd. "So everyone stay here, cheer hard, have fun, and go Habs go!"
As the Canadiens advance into the final round of the Stanley Cup playoffs, it is likely that celebrations of such sort in Montreal will only continue to escalate.