Game Thread: It's Rivalry Night as Habs Visit Leafs

MONTREAL - NOVEMBER 20: Mike Komisarek #8 of the Toronto Maple Leafs clears Travis Moen #32 and Scott Gomez #11 of the Montreal Canadiens from the net during the NHL game at the Bell Centre on November 20 2010 in Montreal Quebec Canada. The Canadiens defeated the Maple Leafs 2-0. (Photo by Richard Wolowicz/Getty Images)
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So who wants two points?

The Toronto Maple Leafs snapped a three-game losing streak, with a 4-1 win over Minnesota earlier this week, so we know they are hungry for them. The Canadiens meanwhile tossed away a second point in last night's loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Regardless of where they are in the standings though, this rivalry tends to bring the best out of both clubs.

The Leafs penalty kill is dead last in the league, but they have been perfect in the 13 times they've had to defend shorthanded in 2012. Otherwise translated, Ron Wilson's club has been playing disciplined hockey in January.

Jonas Gustavsson gets the start in goal for the Leafs. "The Monster" is 3-1-1 (2.44, .913) lifetime against the Habs.

Joffrey Lupul, named an alternate captain for next week's All-Star game, is more than on pace for a career year is socring. He already has 51 points (his personal best is 53), has four points in his last two games.

Mikhail Grabovski has eight points in his last eight for the Leafs. Thirty of Phil Kessel's 50 points on the season have come in 24 home games.

Carey Price will be back in goal for the Canadiens, and is 0-1-1 this season against the Leafs.

The game also marks Tomas Kaberle's first visit to Toronto in a Habs uniform.

Petteri Nokelainen suffered a lower body injury on Friday, and could be a game time decision tonight.

Tonight's game is dubbed "Rivalry Night" at the Air Canada Cente. Expect a pre-game ceremony featuring several former Habs and Leafs greats. Alumni teams from both clubs met last night in Hamilton, as part of the AHL Outdoor Classic.

MONTREAL CANADIENS PROJECTED LINEUP

Forwards

Travis Moen - Lars Eller - Andrei Kostitsyn

Max Pacioretty - David Desharnais - Erik Cole

Rene Bourque - Tomas Plekanec - Michael Blunden

Mathieu Darche - Scott Gomez - [double shift]

Defensemen

Josh Gorges - P.K. Subban

Alexei Emelin - Raphael Diaz

Hal Gill - Tomas Kaberle

Yannick Weber

Goalies

Carey Price - Peter Budaj

Habsleafs_medium

TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS PROJECTED LINES

Forwards

Matthew Lombardi - Tyler Bozak - Phil Kessel

Clarke MacArthur - Mikael Grabovski - Nikolai Kulemin

Joffrey Lupul - Tim Connolly - Nazem Kadri

Joey Crabb - David Steckel - Mike Brown

Defense Pairings

Luke Schenn - Dion Phaneuf

Carl Gunnarsson - Mike Komisarek

Jake Gardiner - Cody Franson

Goalies

Jonas Gustavssonn - James Reimer

Ron Wilson Pre-Game


An award for Brian Burke

Canadiens vs Maple Leafs coverage

Leafs coverage from our SBN rivals at Pension Plan Puppets

Pre-game reading

Some writing by a Leafs fan for you to disect.

Don Cherry's "rat" on using Scott Gomez in last night's shootout

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