Police look to contain rowdy Canadiens fans after win over Vegas to advance

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·1 min read
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

MONTREAL — Rowdy fans outside the Bell Centre were already celebrating — cheering and launching fire works — before the Montreal Canadiens beat the Vegas Golden Knights to advance to the Stanley Cup final for the first time since 1993 on Thursday.

Artturi Lehkonen scored in overtime as Montreal beat Vegas 3-2 to take the third-round series in six games, with the goal setting off wild scenes inside and outside the Bell Centre.

Following the game, fans were forced to stay inside the arena due to safety concerns as the streets in the nearby area became raucous.

Police began firing tear gas into the crowd surrounding Bell Centre around 11:15 p.m. ET. Police spokesman Manuel Couture said police began trying to disperse the crowd after officers were assaulted and vehicles were vandalized.

Shortly before 1 a.m., riot police were still working to disperse groups of revellers in downtown Montreal.

Thursday was also Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day in Quebec, and there was more to celebrate than usual as the Canadiens now look to bring the sport's Holy Grail back over the border for the first time since Montreal's triumph 28 years ago against the Los Angeles Kings.

Canadiens assistant coach Luke Richardson opened his post-game press conference with a message to those outside the arena.

"I know it's a little crazy outside the Bell Centre. But we hope everybody's enjoying themselves and has a great time, and especially with Saint-Jean-Baptist Day, and it's such a special day to celebrate. But let's make sure we all celebrate responsibly and get home safe."

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 25, 2021.

The Canadian Press

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting