clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Canadiens vs Canucks: Game preview, start time, and TV schedule

After two tough losses last week, can the Habs avenge a tough loss from last month?

Anne-Marie Sorvin-USA TODAY Sports

Two winning efforts. One measly point.

After a week that was both uneventful and unsuccessful, the Canadiens are hoping this week will be the opposite. With four games on tap, the Habs will definitely be busy. Facing-off against three opponents in the average-to-above-average range, there should also be plenty of opportunity for success.

The first stop: settling a score with the Vancouver Canucks.

The Canucks put an end to the Canadiens' historic season-opening win streak, dealing them an emphatic loss in Carey Price's first poor start of the campaign. Like Saturday's loss to Colorado, however, the scoreline was much less flattering to Montreal than the possession numbers.

The Canadiens have played well of late, but don't have the proof in the standings to show it. Tonight's game is about results, and pulling out of a rut before it becomes something more.

How to Watch

Start time: 7:30 PM ET
In the Canadiens region (French): RDS
In the Canadiens region (English): Sportsnet East
In the Canucks region: Sportsnet Pacific
Elsewhere: NHL GameCenter, NHL Center Ice

Tale of the Tape

Canadiens Statistic Canucks
13-3-2 Record 7-6-5
5-3-2 L10 Record 4-4-2
53.6 Score-Adjusted Corsi % 50.3
63 Goals For 52
Goals Against 46
1.42 5v5 Goal Ratio 1.18
25.4 PP% 15.8
88.3 PK% 79.2

Know Your Enemy

In previewing the first round of Habs vs. Canucks, the Canucks looked like a team whose identity was stuck in between a veteran-led contender and a franchise undertaking a youth movement. While the veteran contributors - Henrik Sedin, Daniel Sedin, and Radim Vrbata among them - appeared to be the greatest threat to the Habs that night, it was the kids who did the most damage.

Tonight, the kid contingent will be a little larger, as Hunter Shinkaruk has left the Utica Comets to join the big club. His presence comes in the absence of Alex Burrows, who has left the Canucks for personal reasons and is doubtful for tonight' s contest. Shinkaruk has been dynamite in the AHL, and while his minutes may be few this evening, he'll add a dynamic quality not otherwise present on the Canucks' fourth line. Assuming he plays, the timing of Shinkaruk's call-up also makes tonight's game the second time the Habs will face the AHL's leading goal-scorer this season.

Besides Burrows, the Canucks may be short a couple of other regulars from their lineup this evening. Brandon Prust, who was injured when these two teams last met, is not quite ready for a return, while Brandon Sutter may return tonight after missing Vancouver's last two contests.

Regardless of Sutter's status, it's clear that Vancouver's recipe for success will be the same as last time. They'll count on their veteran leaders to neutralize the contributions of Montreal's best players, and hope that their up-and-comers can supply enough goals to get the win.

Last Time Out

The kids came through for Vancouver last time out, with a pair of Jared McCann goals book-ending a Luca Sbisa tally as the Canucks took a 3-0 first period lead. The Habs, most notably the DD-Fleischmann-Weise trio, had numerous opportunities to respond to the Canucks, but were unable to crack Ryan Miller before the first intermission.

The Canadiens drew closer in the second period, when Torrey Mitchell tipped in an Alexei Emelin point shot to make the score 3-1, but the Habs would draw no closer. Radim Vrbata capitalized on a powerplay minutes later, and that spelled the end of Montreal's impressive streak.

Highlighted by Mitchell's goal, the fourth line played an impressive game, garnering over 50% of shot attempts while they were on the ice. If the Canadiens are to keep pace atop the NHL standings, they'll need similar depth contributions tonight to balance the consistently stellar work of their top line.

For the past two games, the Habs have managed to played well enough to win. Tonight, they'll seek to lock down both the process and the result.