They’ve probably played sillier games, but what was offered up between the Canadiens and Detroit Red Wings at Joe Louis Arena Thursday must rank right up there. The Habs clawed out a 5-4 win over their playoff-desperate hosts, Montreal’s 99th all-time on Detroit ice, to win their fourth straight game and seventh in their last eight.

The skinny: Tomas Plekanec scored twice with David Desharnais, Max Pacioretty and Thomas Vanek adding singles. There was nothing easy about this, the Red Wings rallying from 2-0 and 3-1 deficits to finally tie the game at 3-3 4:30 into the third period. The Canadiens pulled back into a two-goal lead before Detroit scored again, forcing the Habs to hang on for a thoroughly entertaining if sometimes bizarre victory.

Surreal Subban: Canadiens defenceman P.K. Subban went minus-1 for the game but was hugely involved all night, on the ice for seven of the nine goals. While he played a vital role in setting up both of Plekanec’s goals, the centre’s 19th and 20th giving him six 20-goal seasons as a Canadien, two Detroit goals were the direct result of Subban giveaways, a third when he was outmuscled on the end boards behind the Habs net.

Price sharp early: Goaltender Carey Price had to be sharp twice against returning Red Wing Tomas Jurco in the first period, foiling the forward from close in. Jurco was back in Detroit’s lineup, having missed seven games with a broken rib. Price finally made 26 saves and said after the game: “It doesn’t matter now if the score is 10-9, as long as you win.”