The Montreal Canadiens (17-17-6) will face the lowly San Jose Sharks (9-23-3) at Bell Centre on Thursday. The puck drop is scheduled for 7 pm ET.
The Habs are coming off a difficult game versus the Philadelphia Flyers on Wednesday night that saw the team quickly jump to a 2-0 lead. The scoreline was encouraging, but the overall stats were not. The Habs scored on their first two shots, which also happened to be the only shots they put on net in the first period.
They eventually lost 3-2 in the shootout despite a great effort from Cayden Primeau.
Goaltender Samuel Montembeault did not make the trip to Philadelphia and is expected to be named the starter versus the Sharks. We will have to await confirmation from head coach Martin St-Louis, but if Montembeault does start against the Flyers we can expect Jake Allen, who has garnered trade interest around the league, to start against the Edmonton Oilers on Saturday.
As for the Sharks, they’re currently in the midst of one of the worst seasons in NHL history, and that includes years in which the league expanded.
They’re currently on a 12-game losing streak and have accumulated just 21 points in 41 games.
Their drive for Macklin Celebrini has led to the team scoring just 81 times while allowing their opponents to find the back of the net on 171 occasions.
Yes, you read that right, the Sharks currently have a -91 goal difference at the halfway mark of the 2023-24 season.
Former Hab Mike Hoffman will be in the lineup, though we shouldn’t expect much offence from the veteran winger. Hoffman has eight goals and five assists on the season. The team’s leading scorer is currently Tomas Hertl, with 13 goals and 15 assists.
Montreal Canadiens Injuries
- Carey Price (IR)
- Chris Wideman (IR)
- Kirby Dach (out indefinitely, ACL/MCL)
- Rafael Harvey-Pinard (day-to-day)
- Alex Newhook (out 10-12 weeks)
- Tanner Pearson (IR)
- Christian Dvorak (out)
San Jose Sharks Injuries
- Logan Couture (IR)
- Matt Benning (IR)
- Givani Smith (IR)
- Jacob MacDonald (IR)
- Nico Sturm (IR)
Montreal Canadiens Projected Lineup
San Jose Sharks Projected Lineup
Eklund – Hertl – Hoffman
Duclair – Granlund – Zetterlund
Barbanov – Kunin – Bailey
Zadina – Carpenter – Sabourin
Ferraro – Emberson
Thrun – Rutta
Addison – Burroughs