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Game #54 ~ Penguins @ Canadiens. Tuesday, February 7th, 2012.


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Penguins visit Canadiens to finish off road swing

Penguins (30-19-4) at Canadiens (20-24-9)

Last 10: Pittsburgh (8-2-0); Montreal (4-4-2)

Season series: This is the fourth and final meeting between the clubs this season. The Penguins have won all three so far, but just once in regulation. They beat the Habs, 3-1, on Oct. 20 at Consol Energy Center. Pittsburgh won 4-3 in overtime on Nov. 26 in Montreal and 5-4 in a shootout on Jan. 20 in Pittsburgh. The Canadiens let two-goal leads slip away in the latter two games.

Big story: The Canadiens will be trying to salvage some points out of the season series with the Penguins while also attempting to climb back into the Eastern Conference playoff picture. The Penguins just want to erase the memory of Sunday's 5-2 loss at New Jersey with a strong showing in the final game of a four-game road trip.

Team Scope:

Penguins: Marc-Andre Fleury is expected to get the start. He won nine starts in a row prior to Sunday, when he was pulled 2:28 into the second period after giving up his third goal on 12 shots. Fleury has played in all three games against the Canadiens this season. However, he has just a 3.36 goals-against average at Bell Centre.

Tyler Kennedy returned to Pittsburgh after suffering a lower-body injury in Sunday's loss to the Devils. Penguins coach Dan Bylsma said Monday from Montreal that Kennedy is being evaluated and more will be known within the next day or two.

Sidney Crosby, Jordan Staal and Simon Despres all participated in practice on Monday in Montreal, but none are ready to play as of yet. Crosby said he's still experiencing concussion-like symptoms, but it was his first practice with the team. Bylsma said Staal and Despres are still at least a week to 10 days away from returning from their respective knee injuries.

"It's my first practice back with the team and the guys were skating pretty fast," Staal said according to the Penguins website. "It makes you want to catch up pretty fast. It takes a little while to get that under your belt. I'm not far, I think. It's feeling really good. It's mostly mental. The knee feels strong, but we'll find a game hopefully soon enough."

Canadiens: Trade rumors are starting to swirl around the Canadiens. The latest has injured forward Travis Moen linked with San Jose.

Moen, who won a Stanley Cup with the Ducks in 2007, has been on injured reserve with an upper-body injury since Jan. 21, but the Montreal Gazette speculated Monday that he could return for Tuesday's game against Pittsburgh. The Canadiens did not practice Monday, but made some roster moves by sending Aaron Palushaj and Ryan White to Hamilton of the AHL.

The Canadiens played one of their better games in a long time Sunday as they blanked the Jets, 3-0. Carey Price made 23 saves for his third shutout of the season.

Who's hot: Montreal forward Max Pacioretty is not a point-per-game player this season (38 points in 50 games), but he has been of late. Pacioretty has 7 goals and 3 assists and a plus-3 rating over the last 10 games. … Evgeni Malkin scored for the second straight game on Sunday and now has 29 for the season. He leads the NHL with 61 points.

Injury report: The Penguins will be without Kennedy, Crosby, Staal and Despres. … Moen is questionable for the Canadiens.

Stat pack: The Penguins have won all three games against Montreal this season, but Canadiens forward Erik Cole is the leading scorer in the season series with 4 points.

Puck drop: Montreal is 14th in the Eastern Conference and there are rumors about players getting ready to be traded out of town, but the Canadiens are not giving up hope of securing a playoff berth with 29 games to play and 11 points to make up.

"There are a lot of games to go and there's a lot of character in this room," center Tomas Plekanec said. "I'm sure we'll do our best and we'll win some games and get back into the picture and get somewhere where we know we can still make it."

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go Habs go!

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The Montreal Canadiens are waiting for the green light this afternoon from doctors on Travis Moen, who is expected to be cleared to play against the Pittsburgh Penguins tonight.

Moen has missed the last five games, and took the morning skate wearing a non-contact sweater. Following practice, head coach Randy Cunneyworth stated that Moen will get back in the line-up tonight if all goes well this afternoon. If for some reason Moen is not cleared, the Habs will be forced to dress 10 forwards and eight defencemen.

Aaron Palushaj was sent back down to Hamilton, along with Ryan White, on his conditioning stint. White wasted no time getting back into game action for the first time this year, as he scored two goals in thefirst period for the Bulldogs in a Tuesday morning tilt against the San Antonio Rampage. He was a plus- 1 and named the game's first star in a 4-2 loss.

Cunneyworth is looking for a redemption game against the Penguins, as the team feels it was a victory they let slip away in Pittsburgh on January 20.

Carey Price, who is coming off his third shutout of the season and 15th in his career, will get the start in goal.

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i'm ready. one of my few habs and pizza days this year. so..........

gee. i'm so psyched. :o

pizaa! now there's an idea.... i didn't know what to have for supper. except it wont be CB pizza (not edible)

So if Moen is a game-time decision then why was Palushaj sent down?

to be able to justify dressing 8 D? I think if we had more healthy D, randy would play them all :lol:

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No idea if anyone's mentioned it, and this may be the wrong thread for this discussion, but I'm puzzled by the Habs choice of not taking a stab @ Anthony Stewart on waivers. He had 39 points last year on a terrible Thrashers team playing 3rd(?) line minutes. He's 6'2 240, and with us losing Blunden, we could use the size and hitting that Stewart would bring. No idea if he plays any penalty kill minutes, but if he does, he could be an adequate replacement for Moen who is probably getting traded at the deadline. /shrug

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No idea if anyone's mentioned it, and this may be the wrong thread for this discussion, but I'm puzzled by the Habs choice of not taking a stab @ Anthony Stewart on waivers. He had 39 points last year on a terrible Thrashers team playing 3rd(?) line minutes. He's 6'2 240, and with us losing Blunden, we could use the size and hitting that Stewart would bring. No idea if he plays any penalty kill minutes, but if he does, he could be an adequate replacement for Moen who is probably getting traded at the deadline. /shrug

I believe it belongs in the "Around The League" forum, and the "NHL Trade Deadline" thread. :)

Perhaps one of the Mods can move it there. B)

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pizaa! now there's an idea.... i didn't know what to have for supper. except it wont be CB pizza (not edible)

if i wasn't so busy at the farm i would have dropped up north and picked up some bison steak at the near local ranch.

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i'm ready. one of my few habs and pizza days this year. so..........

gee. i'm so psyched. :o

Not much fun as of late....hard to get up & be pumped for a habs game these days.<_<

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I believe it belongs in the "Around The League" forum, and the "NHL Trade Deadline" thread. :)

Perhaps one of the Mods can move it there. B)

I'm not a mod....honest,but I just moved it.....I used magic.:rolleyes:

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Looking for brownie points? <_<

:lol:

Hall of famer dude ...no need to.;)

:lol:

Heeeeeeeeey yooooooooooo! I'm here. B)

THANK GOD :P

Tell me about it :lol:

B)

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Montreal is 14th in the Eastern Conference and there are rumors about players getting ready to be traded out of town, but the Canadiens are not giving up hope of securing a playoff berth with 29 games to play and 11 points to make up.

"There are a lot of games to go and there's a lot of character in this room," center Tomas Plekanec said. "I'm sure we'll do our best and we'll win some games and get back into the picture and get somewhere where we know we can still make it."

GO_HABS_GO.gif

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