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8:30 PM ET Montreal @ Colorado SN, ALT, RDS, TSN 690 Radio


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TONITE, BE SURE TO TUNE IN TO THE HABS VS THE AVS 8:30 PM ET  Montreal @ Colorado  SN, ALT, RDS, TSN 690 Radio

Lineup changes? Defenceman Victor Mete, who was called up from the AHL’s Laval Rocket after the Canadiens’ 4-0 loss to the Boston Bruins Monday night, was paired with Jeff Petry during practice Tuesday, but coach Claude Julien said he had yet to decide on his roster against the Avalanche. Julien also juggled his forward lines at practice, moving Paul Byron up to play with Max Domi and Jonathan Drouin, while Andrew Shaw dropped down to play with Jesperi Kotkaniemi and Artturi Lehkonen. The Canadiens sent defenceman Noah Juulsen down to Laval when they called up Mete.

  1. The goalies: While Julien wouldn’t confirm his lineup, you have to think Carey Price will start against the Avalanche, with Antti Niemi possibly getting the call Thursday night when the Canadiens play the Coyotes in Arizona (9 p.m., TSN2, RDS, TSN 690 Radio). Price has a 13-9-4 record with a 2.94 goals-against average and a .901 save percentage this season, while Niemi is 4-3-1 with a 4.14 GAA and a .876 save percentage. Philipp Grubauer will start in goal for the Avalanche. He has a 7-2-3 record with a 3.22 GAA and a .897 save percentage.
  2. The power play: The Canadiens’ power play has been absolutely brutal, going 0-for-25 in the last eight games and 1-for-30 in the last 10 games since captain Shea Weber and his booming slapshot returned to the lineup. The Canadiens rank 30th in the NHL on the power play with a 12.0 per cent success rate. The Avalanche have the third-best power play in the NHL, clicking at 30.5 per cent. The Canadiens have been much better playing five-on-five, ranking second in the NHL after Monday’s game with 84 goals at even strength, trailing only the Tampa Bay Lightning with 87.
  3. Avalanche warning: Heading into Tuesday’s games, the Avalanche’s Mikko Rantanen was leading the NHL in scoring with 15-41-56 totals and linemate Nathan MacKinnon was second with 21-32-53. Gabriel Landeskog, the third member of the NHL’s most dangerous line this season, ranked 13th in the NHL with 22-19-41 totals. Max Domi, who leads the Canadiens in scoring with 14-19-33 totals, ranked 42nd in the NHL through Monday’s games. Domi hasn’t scored a goal in the last four games and has only one in the last six.
  4. Long and winding road: This is the first of six straight road games for the Canadiens, who won’t play again at the Bell Centre until Jan. 3 when the Vancouver Canucks are the visitors. Before then, the Canadiens have games in Colorado, Arizona, Las Vegas, Florida, Tampa and Dallas. The Canadiens also had a six-game road trip over Christmas and New Year last season and finished with a 3-3-0 record. The Canadiens start this trip holding the second wild-card playoff spot in the Eastern Conference and have a 7-5-3 road record.
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Canadiens projected lineup

Tomas Tatar -- Phillip Danault -- Brendan Gallagher

Jonathan Drouin -- Max Domi -- Paul Byron

Andrew Shaw -- Jesperi Kotkaniemi -- Artturi Lehkonen

Charles Hudon -- Michael Chaput -- Kenny Agostino

Mike Reilly -- Shea Weber

Victor Mete -- Jeff Petry

David Schlemko -- Jordie Benn

Carey Price

Antti Niemi

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1 hour ago, kinot-2 said:

Canadiens changes tonight per Claude Julien:
IN: Hudon and Mete
OUT: Peca and Kulak

 

25 minutes ago, kinot-2 said:

Canadiens projected lineup

Tomas Tatar -- Phillip Danault -- Brendan Gallagher

Jonathan Drouin -- Max Domi -- Paul Byron

Andrew Shaw -- Jesperi Kotkaniemi -- Artturi Lehkonen

Charles Hudon -- Michael Chaput -- Kenny Agostino

Mike Reilly -- Shea Weber

Victor Mete -- Jeff Petry

David Schlemko -- Jordie Benn

Carey Price

Antti Niemi

Things I like:
- Mete in
- Hudon in
- Reilly tried next to Weber
- Mete back with Petry
- That top 4 has potential.  But our 3rd pair is a huge drop off.  


Things Im not liking:
- Kulak out.  He's not a 1st pairing guy but he's easily been one of the best LD we've had this year.  Weird weird move. 
- Schlemko in - and paired with Benn.  Hope they are really sheltering them. 
- Juulsen out (minors). As long as its VERY temporary Im ok with it but IMHO he's easily been one of our 4 best DMen all year. 

 

Things Im not sure about: 
- Shaw and Byron flipped.  I get that PB and JK arent really jiving but Id like to keep Shaw where he is. That said, it might work so im ok with trying it for a bit.

 

If that top 4 works and we can make a few adjustments:

Reilly - Weber
Mete - Petry
Kulak - Juulsen

is probably the best group we can ice without making a trade. 

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24 minutes ago, kinot-2 said:

Canadiens projected lineup

Tomas Tatar -- Phillip Danault -- Brendan Gallagher

Jonathan Drouin -- Max Domi -- Paul Byron

Andrew Shaw -- Jesperi Kotkaniemi -- Artturi Lehkonen

Charles Hudon -- Michael Chaput -- Kenny Agostino

Mike Reilly -- Shea Weber

Victor Mete -- Jeff Petry

David Schlemko -- Jordie Benn

Carey Price

Antti Niemi

I actually don't mind this line up. Byron gives added speed to that line and Shaw gives a physical presence to Kot line. I really hope Hudon has a good game. I'd rather see Kulak instead of Benn and hopefully Jullien will be back. I do think he actually needed to sharpen his game though and being sent down may help him.

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11 minutes ago, H_T_L said:

I hope tonight isn't embarrassing, because if we come out the way we did vs the Bruins,, it's over quickly. I'd personally rather go with Price tomorrow night,,, as there's a much better chance of walking away with points in Arizona.

We actually need to be able to beat the better teams. We pay Price to play in the big games. If we actually skate tonight and are able to somewhat contain their one line we should be able to win. If we play any team the way we played our last game we aren't going to win many. Hopefully it's just the learning curve of a young team.

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29 minutes ago, campabee82 said:

Will be watching the game but not sure if I will be online at the same time tonight. So hopefully I can get on later and say hi but if not will talk to everyone at a later date.

Drop by when you can. :)

 

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2 hours ago, CaptWelly said:

We actually need to be able to beat the better teams. We pay Price to play in the big games. If we actually skate tonight and are able to somewhat contain their one line we should be able to win. If we play any team the way we played our last game we aren't going to win many. Hopefully it's just the learning curve of a young team.

I have little doubt that Price will put on a show. My concern was with the rest of the team. I feel we have a much better shot at 2 points in this B2B vs Arizona. That feeling diminishes greatly with Niemi in net. It's all water under the bridge now as Price will start tonight. Hoping the whole team shows up.

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