NHL Preview from The Sports Network
Monday, October 20th (All times eastern)
Detroit Red Wings (3-1-0-0) at Montreal Canadiens (3-2-0-0), 7:30 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Detroit Red Wings try to bounce back from their first loss of the season tonight when they close out a brief two-game road swing against the Montreal Canadiens at the Bell Centre.
Detroit was denied its first 4-0 start since the 1997-98 season on Saturday when they were edged 4-3 by the Pittsburgh Penguins. Mathieu Schneider had two assists, while Henrik Zetterberg, Tomas Holmstrom and Darren McCarty all tallied for the Red Wings, who blew a one goal third period lead. Last year Detroit lost just three games when leading after two periods,
Dominik Hasek stopped just 13-of-17 shots in the loss.
Detroit gave Pittsburgh eight power plays, including seven in the opening 24 minutes. The Penguins, though, were able to cash in on just one.
On the bright side, Brett Hull returned to the Red Wings' lineup after missing Thursday's game against Vancouver with a sore back.
Detroit, which returns home to face the Columbus Blue Jackets on Wednesday, was 11-1-2 coming off road losses in 2002-03.
The Canadiens also come into tonight's tilt on a sour note after getting blanked 1-0 by the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday. Jose Theodore made 24 saves for Montreal, which had its three-game winning streak stopped and lost for the second time in five games to start the season (3-2).
Theodore, who kept the Canadiens close throughout the contest, stopped Nik Antropov on a short-handed breakaway early in the third period to keep the Habs' deficit at 1-0.
Montreal pulled Theodore in favor of an extra skater late in the third period, but goaltender Ed Belfour knocked the puck behind the net in the closing seconds to preserve the victory. The Habs had just two shots on Belfour in the final stanza.
Tonight's contest also features the two highest scoring defenseman, as Detroit's Nicklas Lidstrom (2g, 3a) and Montreal�s Andre Markov (1g, 4a) are tied for first among NHL rearguards in points. Since the 2002-03 regular season the Red Wings are 18-1-1 when Lidstrom scores a goal.
Montreal won its lone matchup with the Red Wings last season, but has dropped seven of the last nine meetings. Detroit has also won two straight and four of its last five on the Canadiens' ice.
10/20 10:32:31 ET