The Habs pulled out a win in Toronto Saturday night, putting a stop to their second-longest losing streak of the season. It was not easy: the Habs gave up a two-goal lead to the Leafs and if not for a couple of saves from Mike Condon in overtime, could have left Toronto with their sixth loss in a row instead of the two points they desperately needed.
The Canadiens are now three points out of a playoff spot, among a clump of teams separated by five points between third and twelfth place. With Carey Price's return extended to the middle of February, the Canadiens are bunkering down and will be playing with as much of a "one game at a time" mentality as possible.
Tonight's matchup with the Blue Jackets is an opportunity to fight for two more points, and to take nothing for granted, as no games will be won easily for the rest of the season. This could be a good thing, depending on how the Canadiens react to this adversity.
The Blue Jackets are on a three-game losing streak, and winners of three of their past ten games. They are not very strong up front, but are still ranked middle of the pack in the NHL for goals-scored, and have the ability to score three goals in a game, which seems to be the Canadiens' kryptonite.
Mike Condon gets his 33rd start tonight, and will be tracking down his 14th win of the season. After playing a stretch of games with a save percentage above .910, Condon has been below-bar in that regard over his past two games with percentages under .900, but that's just the effect of the Canadiens allowing so few shots. It could end up being a similar game tonight where he'll need to stay sharp and make the saves when called upon, as he did Saturday in Toronto in both overtime and the shootout.
No lineup changes for the Habs tonight. P.K. Subban missed practice this morning with a flu virus, but will be a game-time decision.
The puck drops at 7:00 PM EST.
How To Watch:
In Canada (French): RDS
In Canada (English): Sportsnet East
In the Blue Jackets region: FS-O
Elsewhere: NHL GameCenter, NHL Center Ice
|Max Pacioretty||Tomas Plekanec||Brendan Gallagher|
|Alex Galchenyuk||David Desharnais||Dale Weise|
|Tomas Fleischmann||Lars Eller||Daniel Carr|
|Brian Flynn||Torrey Mitchell||Devante Smith-Pelly|
|Andrei Markov||P.K. Subban|
|Alexei Emelin||Jeff Petry|
|Nathan Beaulieu||Mark Barberio|
Scratched: Greg Pateryn, Jacob De La Rose
Injuries: Carey Price (lower body) Tom Gilbert (lower body), Paul Byron (upper body)
|Scott Hartnell||Alexander Wennberg||Brandon Saad|
|Boone Jenner||Brandon Dubinsky||Cam Atkinson|
|Kerby Rychel||William Karlsson||Nick Foligno|
|Matt Calvert||Gregory Campbell||Rene Bourque|
|Ryan Murray||Seth Jones|
|Jack Johnson||Justin Falk|
|Fedor Tyutin||Dalton Prout|
Scratched: Josh Anderson, Jared Boll, Cody Goloubef
Injuries: Sergei Bobrovsky (lower body), David Savard (strained oblique), Curtis McElhinney (ankle), David Clarkson (upper body)
Check out the enemy over at The Cannon.