Canadiens Pre Game
Canadiens Game 72: Evans Set To Return, Forward Lines Shuffled
The Montreal Canadiens (28-37-6) are aiming for an upset as they face the league leading Boston Bruins (54-11-5) Thursday Night at TD Garden. The puck drop is scheduled for 7:00 PM ET.
If the Canadiens manage to earn two points, it will be a second consecutive win for the club, a rather rare feat considering their record this season.
Montreal bested the Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday night, powered by strong efforts from Mike Matheson, Samuel Montembeault, and Jonathan Drouin. Kirby Dach opened the scoring against Tampa Bay, finding the back of the net in his first game back since being placed on the injured reserve.
It should come as no surprise given Dach’s impact since joining the Habs.
Whichever line Dach is placed on tends to be the Canadiens’ most dominant trio, owing to his ability to create time and space for his linemates due to his elite transition game.
Must Read: Dach’s Return Is A Good News/Bad News Situation
Nick Suzuki, who played alongside Dach on Tuesday night, is currently the Canadiens’ hottest player, with six points in his last five games, all of which have come in the form of assists.
Matheson continues to provide excellent hockey for head coach Martin St-Louis, leading the team with three goals in five games.
Jake Allen is confirmed as the Canadiens’ starter. He allowed six goals on 18 shots in his last start.
Jake Evans is expected to play, which would mark the first time he’s played in an NHL game since the lower-body injury on Jan.14. Evans will center the third line, alongside Rem Pitlick and Brendan Gallagher.
Defenceman Jordan Harris was also spotted at practice, though his presence in the lineup will be a game-time decision.
As for the Bruins, they continue to be the most dominant team in the league by a rather wide margin. To give you an idea of how impressive they’ve been this season, Boston has already qualified for the playoffs, the only team in the NHL to do so at this point in the season.
Brad Marchand leads the charge in recent games, with seven points in five games. Just like Suzuki, all of Marchand’s production in the last five games have come from assists.
Bruins goaltender Linus Ullmark has been fantastic this season, earning 35 wins in 42 starts. In other words, Ullmark has more wins than both Allen and Samuel Montembeault combined.
Fortunately for the Canadiens, Jeremy Swayman is expected to get the start, although he’s unlikely to make life easy on Canadiens forwards, seeing as he’s currently sporting a .920 save percentage this season.
The last time these two teams met the Bruins emerged victorious, earning a 4-2 win in Montreal.
Montreal Canadiens Injuries
- Kaiden Guhle (Injured)
- Joel Armia (Day-To-Day)
- Kirby Dach (Out Indefinitely)
- Christian Dvorak (Injured Reserve)
- Brendan Gallagher (Injured Reserve)
- Jake Evans (Injured Reserve)
- Arber Xhekaj (Injured Reserve)
- Juraj Slafkovsky (Injured Reserve)
- Cole Caufield (Injured Reserve)
- Sean Monahan (LTIR)
- Carey Price (LTIR)
- Paul Byron (LTIR)
Boston Bruins Injuries
- Nick Foligno (Injured Reserve)
- Taylor Hall (Injured Reserve)
- Derek Forbort (Out)
Montreal Canadiens Projected Lineup
|Mike Hoffman||Nick Suzuki||Joel Armia|
|Sean Farrell||Jonathan Drouin||Denis Gurianov
|Rem Pitlick||Jake Evans||Brendan Gallagher|
|Micheal Pezzetta||Chris Tierney||Joel Teasdale|
|Mike Matheson||Justin Barron|
|Joel Edmundson||Chris Wideman|
|Frederic Allard||Jonathan Kovacevic|
Boston Bruins Projected Lineup
Marchand – Bergeron – DeBrusk
Zacha – Krejci – Pastrnak
Bertuzzi – Coyle – Frederic
Greer – Nosek – Hathaway
Grzelcyk – McAvoy
Lindholm – Clifton
Orlov – Zboril
|Team||PP %||PK %|
|Montreal Canadiens||16.3% (28th)||72.1% (29th)|
|Boston Bruins||22.7% (11th)||87.1% (1st)|
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