You cannot discount that 9-0 start the Canadiens had to their 2015-16 season. The 18 points collected over the first three-and-a-half weeks of October pole-vaulted the Habs into a first-place position that looked almost uncontestable. But since going 9-0, the Habs have gone 4-3-2 in their last eight games, and are now second in the Eastern Conference behind the New York Rangers (who are in the midst of their own winning streak, that was extended to nine last night).
The Habs will get a chance to prevent their first three-game losing streak tonight by welcoming the team that stopped their perfect season-opening run at nine: the Vancouver Canucks.
The Canucks are a "beatable" team, with a record of 7-6-5, and have been on the road since November 7th. This will be their sixth game of a seven-game Eastern Conference road trip. The Canucks are 1-3-1 on the trip thus far, including a loss Saturday to the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Brandon Prust was supposed to make his return to the Bell Centre tonight, but is still nursing an ankle injury he sustained when the Habs visited the Canucks at the end of October. Prust had two assists in the game.
The Canadiens will be icing the exact same lineup that saw them out-shoot the Colorado Avalanche 40-24 in a 6-1 loss.
The puck drops at 7:30 PM EST.
How To Watch:
In Canada (French): RDS
In Canada (English): Sportsnet East
In the Canucks' region: Sportsnet Pacific
Elsewhere: NHL GameCenter, NHL Center Ice
|Max Pacioretty||Tomas Plekanec||Brendan Gallagher|
|Lars Eller||Alex Galchenyuk||Alexander Semin|
|Tomas Fleischmann||David Desharnais||Dale Weise|
|Brian Flynn||Torrey Mitchell||Devante Smith-Pelly|
|Andrei Markov||P.K. Subban|
|Nathan Beaulieu||Jeff Petry|
|Tom Gilbert||Greg Pateryn|
Scratched: Jarred Tinordi, Paul Byron
Injuries: Carey Price (lower body), Alexander Semin (lower body), Michael Bournival (post-concussion syndrome)
|Daniel Sedin||Henrik Sedin||Jannik Hansen|
|Sven Baertschi||Bo Hovart||Jake Virtanen|
|Chris Higgins||Jared McCann||Radmin Vrbata|
|Hunter Shinkaruk||Adam Cracknell||Derek Dorsett|
|Alexander Edler||Christopher Tanev|
|Dan Hamhuis||Yannick Weber|
|Ben Hutton||Matt Bartkowski|
Injuries: Luca Sbisa (undisclosed), Brandon Prust (ankle) Brandon Sutter (undisclosed), Alexandre Burrows (personal reasons)
Check out the enemy over at Nucks Misconduct.