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Canadiens vs. Maple Leafs: Game thread, rosters, lines, and how to watch

A Saturday night matchup with the Leafs wraps up a short homestand.

Toronto Maple Leafs v Montreal Canadiens Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images

Montreal Canadiens vs. Toronto Maple Leafs

How to watch

Start time: 7:00 PM EDT / 4:00 PM PDT
In Canada: CBC, CityTV, Sportnet One, Sportsnet Now (English), TVA Sports (French)
Streaming: NHL.tv / NHL Live

The Canadiens played well at five-on-five versus the San Jose Sharks in Thursday’s game, but special teams were a different story, and the reason Montreal was dealt a second straight defeat. That game followed several days of rest, and the Habs are due for several more after tonight’s contest, so they should be feeling good in tonight’s home matchup with the Toronto Mple Leafs.

The Leafs won’t be playing the same shutdown style the Sharks comfortably slipped into two nights ago. Defence hasn’t been a feature of the previous two meetings between the rivals, both 6-5 shootout victories in Montreal’s favour, and there’s no reason to expect a low-scoring affair tonight.

Toronto’s defence, and the struggling backup behind it, should offer plenty of opportunities for a few players off to slow starts to gain some offensive confidence. Paul Byron has yet to score, Shea Weber has just one goal through the first eighth of the season, and Jesperi Kotkaniemi has been held to just a single point in his last seven games after notching two goals in his first three outings of the year.

Claude Julien’s attempts to tighten up the defence has resulted in a new alignment on the back end. Brett Kulak was an extra skater this morning, signalling that Mikey Reilly, the least-used player on the roster with just two games so far, will be back in tonight. We will have to wait to see how the pairings shake out, but him lining up beside Cale Fleury while Ben Chiarot moves back up to Jeff Petry’s side may be the decision made by the coaching staff.

It’s promising to be a back-and-forth game at the Bell Centre, and the Canadiens will hope the Leafs are less opportunistic than most of their opponents have been this season.

Montreal Canadiens projected lineup

Forwards

Left Wing Centre Right Wing
Left Wing Centre Right Wing
Tomas Tatar Phillip Danault Brendan Gallagher
Jonathan Drouin Max Domi Joel Armia
Artturi Lehkonen Jesperi Kotkaniemi Paul Byron
Nick Cousins Nate Thompson Nick Suzuki

Defencemen

Left Defence Right Defence
Left Defence Right Defence
Victor Mete Shea Weber
Ben Chiarot Jeff Petry
Mikey Reilly Cale Fleury

Goaltenders

Goaltenders
Goaltenders
Carey Price
Keith Kinkaid

Scratches: Christian Folin, Brett Kulak, Jordan Weal

Toronto Maple Leafs projected lineup

Forwards

Left Wing Centre Right Wing
Left Wing Centre Right Wing
Andreas Johnsson Auston Matthews William Nylander
Ilya Mikheyev Alexander Kerfoot Mitch Marner
Trevor Moore Jason Spezza Kasperi Kapanen
Dmytro Timashov Nick Shore Frederik Gauthier

Defencemen

Left Defence Right Defence
Left Defence Right Defence
Morgan Rielly Cody Ceci
Jake Muzzin Tyson Barrie
Kevin Gravel Justin Holl

Goaltenders

Goaltenders
Goaltenders
Michael Hutchinson
Frederik Andersen