MONTREAL – Police in Montreal fired tear gas into the large, raucous crowd that gathered after the Canadiens advanced to the Stanley Cup Final Thursday night.
Around 11:15 p.m. ET, Police spokesperson Manuel Couture said officers were assaulted and vehicles were vandalized.
Riots have already started in Montreal after the Habs game. Smh this the part about winning I don't like. Not a good look for the citt pic.twitter.com/FzEszFaS2q
— Blackcoinpurse (@blackcoinpurse) June 25, 2021
Photos and video posted to social media show a rowdy crowd clad in Canadiens jerseys flipping over a police car.
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 temporarily forced to stay inside the arena due to safety concerns as the streets in the nearby area became raucous.
— CityNews Montreal (@CityNewsMTL) June 25, 2021
Shortly before 1 a.m. ET, riot police were still working to disperse groups of revellers in downtown Montreal, saying things were gradually returning to normal.
However, police said a heavy police presence continued.
Centre-Ville de Montréal
Retour graduel à la normale. Les policiers sont toujours présents en grand nombre. #SPVM ^RM
— Police Montréal (@SPVM) June 25, 2021
The crowd appeared to have dispersed about an hour later.
The Canadiens are headed to the NHL championship for the first time since 1993.
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.”