But rookie head coach’s fingerprints were all over this game as Montreal twice clawed back from two-goal deficits.

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TAMPA — Martin St. Louis returned to the rink where he established his Hall of Fame credentials and came away a winner as the Canadiens beat the Tampa Bay Lightning 5-4 in a shootout Saturday.

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“He told us not to make it about him, he doesn’t care at all about that but, in the locker room, we wanted to get the win for him and (recent front-office addition Vinny Lecavalier),” said defenseman Joel Edmundson. “You look up in the rafters and you see their numbers and it’s his first game of him in Tampa and you want to get the win for him. He didn’t want to make it about him, but we definitely did.”

The rookie head coach’s fingerprints were all over this game.

The Canadiens played a strong first period, but they went into the room trailing 2-0. They could have been discouraged, but they heeded St. Louis’ call to trust the process.

“I think you talk about not getting too caught up in the result, whether it’s a loss or a bad period,” St. Louis said. “If you stick with your self-assessment, it’s a lot easier to grow as an individual and a team, and I thought we did that. We had a really good first period and it would have been easy to get caught up in the score. If we talk about the process and not worry so much about the result, the process will come along and we did a good job with that.”

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The Canadiens battled back from two-goal deficits on two occasions and earned the win when Nick Suzuki scored on the final shot of the shootout. Jake Allen saw more than 40 shots for the sixth consecutive game and was the difference in the shootout when he stopped a murderers’ row of marksmen — Brayden Point, Nikita Kucherov and Steven Stamkos.

Edmundson said one of the keys to the victory was the play of young defensemen Corey Scheuneman, Justin Barron and Jordan Harris, whose mother and girlfriend flew from Boston to his first NHL game.

“This isn’t an easy team to face,” Edmundson said. “They’re at the top of the league for a reason, but especially the young defensemen. They were cool, calm and collected out there, and it was nice to see (Harris play his first ever game, and you’d never know it was his first game by him.

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“We didn’t know what kind of player he was,” Edmundson added. “He joined us in Florida and to see him in action was very impressive.”

“It was amazing and the fact that we got a win for (assistant equipment manager Pat Langlois) in his 2,500th game and for coach, and everyone played super hard and I was glad to be a part of that,” Harris said.

“I was a little nervous,” Harris said. “You get a hit in, you touch the puck and you settle in.”

On one occasion, Harris was confronted with a forechecker behind the Montreal net, but he spun around and used his skating ability to carry the puck over center ice.

“It’s instinct,” he said. “I’ve done it so many times and you read the situation. It’s kind of habit.”

Harris learned one new thing. Alex Killorn knocked his lid off and Harris was penalized for playing without a helmet, something that doesn’t occur in college hockey, where players wear full cages.

“I wasn’t sure (of the rule),” Harris said. “I went to pick it up and dropped it again and the ref came up to me in the box and said: ‘You can’t do that.’ ”

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