Tonight's game will be a chance for the Habs to salvage a season series split with the defending Stanley Cup champions. The Habs took the first two games, while the Bruins took the following three. All but one game have been one-goal decisions.
The question is, will the Canadiens play to the level of their opponent? When they do, it's typically a good outcome. We saw the opposite of that on Monday against the Carolina Hurricanes.
Boston pretty much has a top-three playoff spot all but sewn up, holding a four-point lead over nearest Northeast Division opponent, the Ottawa Senators, with five games in hand.
Still the it appears the Bruins are leaving no margin for error in a look to repeat as Cup champions and are working towards the close and distant future.
The Bruins signed defenseman Johnny Boychuk to a three-year, $10 million deal on Monday, practically solidifying their defense corp through at least 2013. Joe Corvo remains the only regular rearguard unsigned, and he would become an unrestricted free agent (UFA) on July 1.
The Canadiens in the meantime took out some frustration during Tuesday's practice, after Scott Gomez and coach Randy Cunneyworth got into it. Of course the Montreal media just ate that up.
Ryan White will make his season debut, after playing a four-game conditioning stint with the Hamilton Bulldogs. White had five points (four goals) in that stretch.
A blowout tonight for either team would be surprising, but who knows. Tim Thomas is 3-1-0 (1.26, .964) against the Canadiens this season. Carey Price has started all five games, going 2-3 (1.82, .934).
MONTREAL CANADIENS PROJECTED LINEUP
Andrei Kostitsyn - Scott Gomez - Ryan White
Carey Price - Peter Budaj
BOSTON BRUINS PROJECTED LINEUP
Zdeno Chara - Johnny Boychuk
Dennis Seidenberg - Joe Corvo
Tim Thomas - Tuukka Rask
Bruins SBN coverage from Stanley Cup of Chowder