The Habs are in Florida tonight to take on former Canadiens property (blink and you missed him), Dan Ellis and one of the league's worst goal differentials. Nah, not talking Buffalo bad, but think Edmonton bad. The Canadiens will have to do it without Tomas Plekanec, who is back in Montreal due to family reasons. The line-up has switched a little from Thursday's game in Detroit, with George Parros, acquired from Florida in the off-season, coming into the line-up and fittingly playing his first game since March 5th. The line-up adjustments also see the reunion of the EGG line (in time for Easter) with Lars Eller skating between Alex Galchenyuk and Brendan Gallagher. Jarred Tinordi also will be watching this game from the stands while Douglas Murray is back in the line-up.
Florida starts Ellis in goal, because Roberto Luongo is out with a sore neck. Strombone is sitting this tilt out because '96 Panthers alum Radek Dvorak crashed into him. Luongo was originally supposed to started, but that thought was quashed on Friday when the Panthers recalled Scott Clemmensen from San Antonio. So it should come as no surprise that the Panthers (in true Florida fashion) are dressing a lot of spare parts in this game.
The Canadiens' key to tonight's game is to make sure no one named Tomas, Tom, or Thomas scores. With Kopecky and Gilbert out and Tim Thomas playing in Dallas, the Canadiens just have to focus on Tomas Fleischmann. Shouldn't be too hard.
Trivia: Which member of the 1996 Florida Panthers (and former Halifax Citadel) joined the Canadiens at the 2002 trade deadline?
Tale of the tape
Puck drop is at 7PM EST
|Max Pacioretty||David Desharnais||Thomas Vanek|
|Alex Galchenyuk||Lars Eller||Brendan Gallagher|
|Rene Bourque||Danny Briere||Brian Gionta|
|Michael Bournival||Ryan White||George Parros|
|Andrei Markov||Alexei Emelin|
|Francis Bouillon||P.K. Subban|
|Douglas Murray||Mike Weaver|
Scratches: Jarred Tinordi, Tomas Plekanec (returned to Montreal for family reasons)
As for the Florida Panthers
|Sean Bergenheim||Nick Bjugstad||Brad Boyes|
|Tomas Fleischmann||Vincent Trocheck||Scottie Upshall|
|Jesse Winchester||Brandon Pirri||Quinton Howden|
|Krys Barch||Scott Gomez||Jimmy Hayes|
|Dmitry Kulikov||Brian Campbell|
|Ed Jovanovski||Colby Robak|
|Erik Gudbranson||Dylan Olsen|
Injuries: Tomas Kopecky (concussion - out indefinitely), Aleksander Barkov (sprained knee - out indefinitely)
Alex Petrovic (upper body), Jonathan Huberdeau (lower body - 1-2 weeks), Tom Gilbert (hernia - remainder of the season), Roberto Luongo (sore neck)
Check out the opposing side at Litter Box Cats