Jason Pominville scored the winning goal in a shootout to give the Buffalo Sabres a 5-4 win over the Canadiens Thursday night at the First Niagara Center.

The Sabres forced the overtime when Thomas Vanek scored his second goal of the night off a pileup in front of the Montreal net, with just 1.9 seconds showing on the clock.

The Canadiens appeared to be in control, as P.K. Subban snapped a 2-2 tie with a power-play goal late in the second period.

When Tomas Plekanec scored his second goal of the game at the 45-second mark of the third period to give his team a 4-2 lead, it appeared the Canadiens could relax.

But the lead didn't last long. The Sabres took advantage of another costly penalty by Ryan White to launch a comeback.

White, who returned to the lineup for the first time since he took a costly double-minor penalty last Wednesday in Ottawa, made things interesting when he took another double-minor. He was caught for roughing Steve Ott and received an extra two when he failed to goad Ott into a fight.

Vanek closed the gap to one when he scored his ninth goal of the season, 25 seconds after White went into the penalty box. His second goal of the period, his 10th of the season at 19:58, sent the game into overtime.

Special teams play was crucial as the Canadiens took their second-period lead.

The Canadiens managed to kill off four consecutive penalties, including a 46-second two-man deficit, before they had a chance to go on the power play.

Cody Hodgson went off for hooking at 17:06 and the Canadiens were handed a two-man advantage at 17:39 when Ott stuck his stick in Subban's face. Subban took advantage 53 seconds later, blasting a 25-footer past Ryan Miller for a 3-2 lead..

The teams had traded goals earlier in the period. Rookie Brendan Gallagher scored his fourth of the season when he beat Miller from the high slot at 12:31. Tyler Ennis got that one back when he beat Peter Budaj on a breakaway at 13:06.

Montreal opened the scoring at 4:11 of the first period when Plekanec found the top corner on Miller's blocker side after taking a pass from Rene Bourque. Ott tied the game at 4:26. Budaj got a piece of the shot but it trickled across the goal line.

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