MONTREAL - If Dale Weise was feeling any pressure in facing the Boston Bruins, he channelled it in the right direction.
The checking forward scored his first goal of the season on a penalty shot and had an assist as the Montreal Canadiens downed the tired, injury-wracked Bruins 5-1 on Thursday night for their fourth straight win.
"I think as a team that was our best outing," said Weise. "Just a complete game.
"Our goaltender didn't have to stand on his head tonight. He made some great saves, but our offence was there. I just felt we had a complete effort from everybody."
It was Weise's first meeting with the Bruins since Montreal's seven-game win in the playoffs last spring. In the handshake line after Game 7, Milan Lucic reportedly threatened to "kill" Weise the next time the teams met after the two battled each other throughout the series.
Weise was scratched for Montreal's 6-4 win over Boston on Oct. 16. But other than a first period scuffle with Gregory Campbell, Weise stuck to hockey and was named first star of the game.
"Our whole team gets up for Boston," he said. "It's a playoff atmosphere every night. The crowd was into it from the start.
"It's just pressure on myself. I feel I've been playing some good games lately, turning in the right direction, and I finally got rewarded for it."
No one was happier for Weise than Max Pacioretty, who scored his seventh and eighth goals of the campaign.
"It makes me so happy because he's such a great teammate and such a great player," said Pacioretty. "You like seeing guys like that have a lot of success. He does what he's asked to do. He could play two minutes or 20. He gives it his all."
Lars Eller, with his third goal in three games, and Jiri Sekac, with the team's first power-play goal since Oct. 18, also scored for Montreal (12-4-1). It was also Sergei Gonchar's debut after he was acquired Tuesday in a trade with Dallas.
"This is the game we've been searching for a while," said Pacioretty. "We've been relying too much on (goalie) Carey Price the last couple of games. It feels really good to put some in for him and take some pressure off him for once."
Dougie Hamilton scored a power play goal for Boston (10-8-0), which lost badly for a second game in a row after a 6-1 pasting in Toronto on Wednesday night. The Bruins, playing without injured captain Zdeno Chara and top centre David Krejci, were in a third game in four nights.
The Bruins had won five in a row before crossing into Canada, then got outscored 11-2 in two games.
"For the most part, teams that have to go through these kind of situations normally grow from it, and that’s what we hope we can do here," said coach Claude Julien. "We need to get better, we know that.
"A little bit of adversity, or a lot of it, whatever you want to call it, you need to use it to your advantage."
Montreal has won eight of the nine regular season meetings with Boston since Feb. 6, 2013
Tuukka Rask was pulled after allowing four goals on 16 shots in Toronto, so Niklas Svedberg got the start for Boston and faced 34 shots. Price made 21 saves for Montreal.
The Bruins came out of the first period with a 1-0 lead on Hamilton's point from Patrice Bergeron's faceoff win only four seconds into a man advantage at 16:04.
Fatigue started to show in the second as Boston took three straight penalties.
The first was a penalty shot at 2:31, as Dennis Seidenberg lost the puck and then tripped Weise. He beat Svedberg between the pads.
Confusion behind the Boston net let Brendan Gallagher poke a pass in front for Eller to score at the 13:00 mark. Pacioretty added one on the rush at 14:57 on a one-timer of a feed from Weise.
Pacioretty was at the doorstep to get a stick on a David Desharnais pass that deflected off Hamilton's skate 5:09 into the third.
Sekac took a Nathan Beaulieu feed and went in alone on the left side to score on a wrist shot on a power play at 14:06. The goal ended a 0-for-27 run without a power-play goal for Montreal. It was only their fourth this season and three have come against Boston.
Gonchar had the Montreal power play looking livelier all night, although he wasn't involved in the goal. He got 20:08 of ice time and had three shots on goal.
"He's awesome," Pacioretty said of Gonchar. "He's had so much success on the power play throughout his career that he jumped right in and we felt comfortable right away.
"It's only a matter of time before we start putting them in and getting our power play rolling. You've got to love the way our power play was, especially for his first night with us."
Notes — With Gonchar in, Montreal dressed seven defencemen, with Beaulieu taking some early shifts on left wing on the fourth line. Gonchar played on the first power-play unit with Andrei Markov. . .Boston's Matt Fraser was knocked wobbly from a punch by Beaulieu during a second-period fight, but he was back for the third. . . The teams meet again Nov. 22 in Boston.
Note to readers: This is a corrected story. A previous version had Weise's name spelled incorrectly.