The Montreal Canadiens (7-7-2) will host the Stanley Cup Champion Vegas Golden Knights (12-3-1) on Thursday night at the Bell Centre. The puck drop is scheduled for 7 p.m. ET.
The Habs are coming off a frustrating 2-1 loss against the Calgary Flames. They generated chances, but they could not find their scoring touch.
The game also featured some rather questionable calls from the officials, including a phantom penalty on Brendan Gallagher with just three minutes left in the third period.
Gallagher (calmly) called out the referees following the debacle, pointing out that the referee that was closest to him, and had the best view, did not call a penalty.
The last time these two teams met was on Halloween night in Nevada. The Canadiens came incredibly close to handing the Golden Knights their first loss in regulation, and pushed them to their limit, but ultimately lost 3-2 in the shootout.
This time around, the Canadiens will hope players like Josh Anderson, who is yet to find the back of the net this season, will finally find their rhythm.
Josh Anderson rips a wrist shot from the slot past Cayden Primeau at the morning skate. The *entire* team cheers.
— Arpon Basu (@ArponBasu) November 16, 2023
As for the lineup, goaltender Cayden Primeau will be handed the reins for the Habs, just his third start this season.
Rafael Harvey-Pinard, who has been nursing an injury, was not present at practice on Thursday morning. If he’s unable to play, expect Michael Pezzetta to be used on the fourth line.
Jordan Harris, on the other hand, was at practice, which means he may return to the lineup. It was an optional skate for the Canadiens, therefore we’ll have to wait for confirmation from head coach Martin St-Louis to clarify the projected lines.
Update: Harris will not dress versus Vegas, nor will Harvey-Pinard.
When it comes to the Golden Knights, they continue to be a dominant force in the NHL. With 25 points already in the bank, Vegas leads the Western Conference and is just one point behind the Boston Bruins among all NHL teams.
However, they have stumbled in recent games, at least relatively speaking.
They’ve only won six of their last 10 games.
Their offence is scored by committee, with five players earning 10 points or more since the start of the year. William Karlsson leads all Golden Knights players with eight goals and 10 assists, with Jack Eichel following closely thanks to his six goals and nine assists.
Shea Theodore is the team’s leading scorer on the blueline, having scored three goals and nine assists in 12 games.
Montreal Canadiens Injuries
- David Savard (out 6-8 weeks)
- Carey Price (IR)
- Chris Wideman (IR)
- Kirby Dach (out indefinitely, ACL/MCL)
Vegas Golden Knights Injuries
- Chandler Stephenson (day-to-day)
- Nicolas Hague (day-to-day)
- Isaiah Saville (IR)
- Daniil Miromanov (IR)
Montreal Canadiens Projected Lineup
|Alex Newhook||Nick Suzuki||Brendan Gallagher|
|Cole Caufield||Christian Dvorak||Juraj Slafkovsky|
|Josh Anderson||Sean Monahan||Tanner Pearson|
|Joel Armia||Jake Evans||Jesse Ylonen|
|Mike Matheson||Justin Barron|
|Kaiden Guhle||Gustav Lindstrom|
|Jayden Struble||Johnathan Kovacevic|
Vegas PRojected Lineup
Barbarshev – Eichel – Marchessault
Carrier – Amadio – Stone
Cotter – Karlsson – Dorofeyev
Rondbjerg – Howden – Kolesar
Martinez – Pietrangelo
McNabb – Theodore
Hutton – Whitecloud