NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Monday, December 19th
(All times Eastern)
Montreal Canadiens (13-13-7) at Boston Bruins (21-9-1), 7 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Montreal Canadiens will try to get their first win
under interim head coach Randy Cunneyworth, as they visit the mighty Boston
Bruins for tonight's Northeast Division battle at TD Garden.
The Canadiens fired head coach Jacques Martin on Saturday and replaced
him with Cunneyworth, who was behind the bench later that night for a 5-3
home loss to New Jersey. The setback dropped Montreal to 13-13-7 on the season
and the Habs are last in the Northeast with 33 points -- 10 behind the
Cunneyworth's troops could have a difficult time against the Bruins
tonight, as the defending Stanley Cup champions have won four straight,
eight of 10 and 18 of their last 21 games. Boston last played on Saturday
afternoon in Philadelphia and blasted the Atlantic Division-leading
Flyers by a 6-0 score.
However, Montreal is 2-1 against the Bruins this year, as the Habs won
the first two encounters before dropping a 1-0 decision when the clubs
last met on Nov. 21 in Quebec. The Canadiens have taken eight of the last
11 regular-season meetings in this series and have five wins in their
previous seven trips to Beantown.
The Canadiens were dealt a 5-3 loss by the Devils on Saturday and ended a
three-game homestand with a 1-2-0 record. Montreal is kicking off a six-game
road trip tonight and is 8-6-1 as the guest this year compared to a 5-7-6 mark
at the Bell Centre.
Chris Campoli, P.K. Subban and Lars Eller all scored for Montreal, while
Carey Price allowed all five goals on 35 shots. The Canadiens led the
game, 3-2, around the midway point of the second period, but New Jersey
scored three unanswered goals to skate away with the win.
"We went out and did a lot of good things early on," said Subban. "We got
ourselves the lead, but we took a few too many penalties. Eventually with
the power play they have, they're going to find something, which they
Montreal forwards Brian Gionta (lower body) and Scott Gomez (groin) and
defenseman Andrei Markov (knee) are currently on injured reserve and
winger Travis Moen has sat out the last two tilts with a foot problem.
Moen, who is tied for fourth on the team with eight goals, is doubtful
for this evening's tilt.
The Bruins were able to exact revenge on the Flyers Saturday, as six
different players scored for Boston in a resounding 6-0 road victory.
Philadelphia had spoiled the Bruins' opening-night raising of their
Stanley Cup banner, defeating Boston 2-1 on Oct. 6. Boston returned the
favor by snapping Philadelphia's winning streak at seven games behind a
four-goal first period and Tim Thomas' fourth shutout of the season.
"We had a well rounded game today," said Thomas, who made 31 saves. "We
had all types of situations, power plays, penalty kills and even
strength. We scored on the power play and we started out the game with a
big goal, which helped put the momentum in our favor. Then, every time
there was an opportunity for them to get back in the game, with a penalty
or something, we came up big on the penalty kill."
Boston has 19 goals during its four-game winning streak and the B's are
now tied with Philadelphia atop the Eastern Conference with 43 points.
The Bruins are playing the first of two straight on home ice tonight and
will also welcome Florida on Friday. Boston is 11-6-1 as the host this
Boston's Gregory Campbell will likely miss a fourth straight game tonight
with a broken left foot.
12/19 10:39:37 ET