Jump to content
The Official Site of the Montréal Canadiens
Canadiens de Montreal

Gdt | Montreal @ Pittsburgh | 2-19-09 | 7:00 Pm Est


Recommended Posts




At Mellon Arena - Pittsburgh,PA


Game Preview

For the underachieving Pittsburgh Penguins, the first game under new coach Dan Bylsma had a familiar result - another disappointing loss.

They hope to change that trend Thursday night against the struggling Montreal Canadiens when they implement Bylsma’s aggressive offense.

After advancing to the Stanley Cup finals for the first time since 1992 last season, Pittsburgh (27-25-6) has been one of the league’s biggest disappointments.

The Penguins had been expected to contend for the Stanley Cup, but are six points out of the Eastern Conference’s eighth and final playoff spot.

The team’s season-long struggles led to the firing of coach Michel Therrien Sunday. Bylsma got the call that he would replace Therrien, just before he was set to coach his Wilkes Barre-Scranton club in an AHL game.

Bylsma met his new team Monday morning and was behind the bench for a 3-2 shootout loss to the New York Islanders later than day - the Penguins’ sixth defeat in nine games.

Bylsma had his first practice with the Penguins on Wednesday and is attempting to get them to be more aggressive and instinctive, and less driven by a mindset of avoiding mistakes.

Though it’s late in the season to install a new offense, but Bylsma hopes his team can quickly adjust to the new scheme.

“He’s really detailed in his systems, and I mean the systems are going to be a drastic change from what we were playing before,” defenseman Brooks Orpik said. “The mentality is he just wants us to be a lot more aggressive in every zone, play on your toes and play with confidence, don’t go out there playing not to make mistakes.”

Bylsma also is seeking increased production from players other than Evgeni Malkin and Sidney Crosby, the NHL’s No. 1 and No. 3 scorers, respectively.

“I think he’s excited for this opportunity, and that’s the way we have to look at this - as a great challenge and a great way for us to raise our game and find a way to (get) ourselves in the playoffs,” said Crosby, who has just one assist in his last four games. “Our game had to change.”

The inconsistent play of goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury has contributed to Pittsburgh’s struggles. He’s gone 1-2-1 with a 2.88 goals-against average in his last four starts. Fleury was also in goal for the Penguins’ first two games against Montreal (30-21-7) this season and posted a 3.57 GAA in losing both.

While this has been a trying season for Pittsburgh, the Canadiens have had their own problems lately.

Montreal suffered a 4-3 shootout loss to Washington on Wednesday, its 11th defeat in 14 games. The Canadiens had the third-most points (60) in the East on Jan. 17, but have since dropped to sixth, just one point ahead of eighth-place Buffalo.

Montreal played without slumping All-Star right wing Alex Kovalev, who was told by the team to stay home and rest during this two-game swing through Washington and Pittsburgh.

Carey Price made 32 saves Wednesday, but fell to 2-7-1 with a 3.71 GAA in 12 games since returning from a lower-body injury. Price, who was 7-0-2 with a 2.09 GAA in his final nine starts before the injury, has won all four of his career starts against the Penguins, compiling a 2.20 GAA in those meetings.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

today i'm going to start taking gainey at his word that no one has called about kovy.

stewart is probably the best news we've had all year, since we have so many prospects, and schneider will only calm and steady the field.

that said and trying to get down to brass tacks; i admit that kovy was trying at times to calm and steady the field, and he might have tried to be a new prospect for the team with a lot of cute plays that didn't go much further than failure, but i don't blame him.

lol to it being malkin's turn to show us khl/nhl play. i thought we had enough of it with ovechkin last night.

my original few posts on this board were about the captaincy and "A"'s and now i think i know what i was talking about. if we had the opportunity to see some of the khl televised maybe we would know better about what we were trying to acoomplish in our game and in our coaching. we will just have to go on the best we can without it i guess.

let's just get out there and try to be a team worthy of the best players in the world, and we will win.

3-1 habs.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

30 - 0 Habs.

Brisebois and Schneider combine to make the worlds deadliest 2nd D-line, making Ovechkin so impressed that he tears his contract up and sign 20 years with Montreal for the sum of 12L of gatorade per day.

Let's go Habs!

That's hilarious. But I don't know if that contract would be too heavy for us. A whole 12L a day? make it 3 and we have a deal.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm sticking with my prediction from yesterday (hey Rocket, you never did bring that post back to me! :P), as much as I hope we can dig deep and pull this out, we seem to have a knack for being the team that other teams rebound against after going through a slump. I have a feeling this could get ugly; we're not out of the water yet, and playing your grinders for 17+ minutes a night isn't going to succeed for long.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have to say I feel pretty good about this game, and I'm not just saying that. We played really well last night and I thought we deserved a better fate than what we got. Even pierre mcguire while still in the process of over hyping the ovechkin goal admitted that we deserved better. Carey had his best game since before the allstar break and our offense seemed to be there last night as well. Hopefully the boys get up for this one like they did last night and give us something to cheer about!

hopefully this time if it goes to a shootout they put in people who can actually score in that situation, i.e not someone who has went 1 for 8 lifetime and a defenseman. I know markov does that back hand move that catches goalies off guard because no one expects something that lame but with Koivu (our best shootout guy in the line up last night) and Kositisyn who has a rocket of a shot, sitting on the bench... I mean you do the math.

Anyways give us a win boys.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

This topic is now closed to further replies.
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...