NHL Preview from The Sports Network
Friday, November 25th (All times Eastern)
Montreal Canadiens (10-9-3) at Philadelphia Flyers (12-6-3), 3 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Montreal Canadiens will shoot for consecutive wins today in Philadelphia, as the Flyers host the Habs in a matinee at Wells Fargo Center.
The Canadiens have alternated wins and losses over their last six trips to the ice and Montreal is 5-2-1 over its previous eight contests. The Habs last posted back-to-back victories with road wins in Phoenix and Nashville on Nov. 10 and 12, respectively.
The Habs and Flyers have split the last six meetings in this series, but Montreal slammed Philly, 5-1, when the clubs met for the first time in 2011-12 at the Bell Centre on Oct. 26. The Flyers, however, have taken two straight and three of the last four encounters on home ice.
Both Montreal and the Flyers are fresh off road comeback wins on Wednesday night. The Canadiens posted a 4-3 shootout decision at Carolina, while Philly topped the Islanders, 4-3, in overtime.
Brian Gionta scored the game-winning goal in the third round of the shootout to lift the Canadiens to the win in Raleigh. Gionta, the Canadiens' captain, moved in slowly on Cam Ward, deked once and fired it past the netminder to the glove side for the winner.
Carolina led the game 2-0 after the first period, but Montreal tied the game at 2-2 just 27 seconds into the third. Carolina would take a 3-2 advantage at 3:18 of the third period, but the Canadiens evened the score just 1:19 later.
Lars Eller, Mike Cammalleri and Travis Moen lit the lamp in regulation for the Habs, while Carey Price made 30 saves for the win. Montreal also stopped all four of Carolina's power-play opportunities in the game and the Canadiens are ranked third in the league this year in penalty killing.
"It's probably one of our greatest strengths as a team right now," Eller told his team's web site about the PK unit. "And of course we have Carey in nets who's always our best penalty killer."
The Canadiens are killing off nearly 96-percent of penalties on the road, where they are 6-4-0 this season. Montreal will host Pittsburgh on Saturday before heading out on a three-game road trip.
Montreal defenseman Hal Gill returned to the lineup Wednesday after missing the previous five games with an illness. Fellow blueliner Jaroslav Spacek sat out a fifth straight game with an upper body injury and is questionable for today's tilt.
Habs forward Scott Gomez is also questionable after sustaining a lower body injury in Wednesday's game.
The Flyers have injury concerns of their own and they will not have forward Jaromir Jagr in the lineup today after he aggravated a groin injury in Wednesday's win over the Islanders.
Jagr, who has 17 points in 19 games with Philly this year, had missed two games before returning against the Isles. He left the game early in the second period and did not return.
Philadelphia captain and top defenseman Chris Pronger has also missed the last two games with an illness and he is questionable for today. Pronger has 12 points in 13 games for the Flyers this year.
The Flyers won on Wednesday thanks in large part to the heroics of Danny Briere, who tied the game late in regulation and won it at the 2:34 mark of overtime. Philadelphia trailed 3-1 after the first period but rallied for its fourth win in six games.
"What I'm most impressed with, is the resiliency to come back from that early deficit, the drive to stay with it," said Flyers head coach Peter Laviolette. "We got some really good performances out of key guys in the second and third periods."
Andrej Meszaros and Scott Hartnell also tallied for the Flyers, who snapped a two-game slide.
Sergei Bobrovsky picked up the win by halting 23 shots. Ilya Bryzgalov got the start but was pulled after allowing three scores on nine shots in the opening 20 minutes.
The Flyers, who are 5-4-2 as the home club this season, will begin a four-game road trip tomorrow against the rival New York Rangers.
11/25 11:02:52 ET