After three days off from preseason play, the Canadiens resume their quest for a preseason victory at Quebec City's Colisee Pepsi. With two different contingents of players taking the ice, the Canadiens were unsuccessful against the Sabres and Bruins. Now, with a third different configuration penciled in on the lineup card, the Canadiens will seek to build some chemistry and momentum with a victory.
The Habs have been active over the past couple of days, announcing fourteen cuts following the Bruins game. Notably, Louis Leblanc was relegated to Hamilton, accompanied by Sven Andrighetto and Joonas Nattinen, among others. CHLers Charles Hudon, Zach Fucale, and Martin Reway will return to their respective junior teams for another year of point-per-game scoring or the opposite of point-per-game scoring, as the case may be.
Absent from the Canadiens roster will be also be a number of newly-injured veterans, including depth defensemen Francis Bouillon, Douglas Murray, and Davis Drewiske. With the Canadiens erstwhile fifth, sixth, and seventh defencemen at least temporarily out of the picture, the door now opens for some of the Canadiens younger guns to prove themselves. Jarred Tinordi and Greg Pateryn, each the proud owner of an impressive training camp to this point, will receive greater ice time, and Darren Dietz has been un-cut to return to competition for a roster spot. With vets Subban, Markov, Gorges, and Diaz already assured of their place on the roster, some combination of the two may sit to allow the coaching staff an extended viewing of those who are less-known quantities.
The Canadiens younger D corps will face a Hurricanes roster that remains similar to last year. With puck-mover Joni Pitkanen gone for the year, Carolina has added former Hab draft pick Ron Hainsey to shore up their defence. The Hurricanes may also be ready to integrate top prospect Elias Lindholm, who will likely get a chance to play centre behind Eric and Jordan Staal. In fact, Lindholm is one of a relatively small group of prospects who will get a chance to move forward with the Canes, as Carolina opted to make their first big cut (fourteen players) before participating in even a single preseason game. Up-and-coming defenseman Ryan Murphy, the offensively-oriented blueliner formerly of the Kitchener Rangers and the Canadian World Junior squad, is another prospect worth watching.
As per usual, keep an eye out here for lineups as we get closer to game-time.
And here they are, up front:
Pacioretty - Desharnais - Collberg
Prust - Galchenyuk - Thomas
Bournival - Holland - McCarron
Tarnasky - Dumont - Blunden
And on the blue line:
Gorges - Subban
Tinordi - Pateryn
Dietz - Nygren