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Canadiens @ Bruins: Game preview, start time, Tale of the Tape, and how to watch

The Habs attempt to beat one of the teams that has contributed to their seven-game skid.

NHL: OCT 27 Canadiens at Bruins Photo by Fred Kfoury III/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Montreal Canadiens @ Boston Bruins

How to watch

Start time: 7:00 PM EST / 4:00 PM PST
In Canada: Sportsnet (English)
In the Canadiens region: RDS (French)
In the US: NHL Network
In the Bruins region: NESN
Streaming: NHL.tv/NHL Live

Montreal scored three goals on Saturday afternoon versus the Philadelphia Flyers, two days after netting four versus the New Jersey Devils. Last Saturday, they recorded five versus the New York Rangers. It seems clear that the team has the talent to fill the net, even while missing a few key members.

In those same games, they’ve allowed, four, six, and six goals, respectively. The other game in that span was an 8-1 defeat to the Boston Bruins. As good as the offence has been recently, the defensive game has cancelled it all out. A few miscues ruined their effort yesterday afternoon, and that continues to be the theme over this run.

Lowering those defensive totals would be the biggest step in getting things turned around. A better performance yesterday will hopefully be the start of a downward trend, because another lopsided loss to the Bruins tonight would make it difficult for the team to continue on in its current configuration.

Tale of the Tape

Canadiens Statistic Bruins
Canadiens Statistic Bruins
11-9-6 Record 18-3-5
1-1-0 H2H Record 1-1-0
54.2% (2nd) Corsi-for pct. 50.0% (15th)
3.31 (8th) Goals per game 3.69 (2nd)
3.54 (30th) Goals against per game 2.31 (1st)
19.0% (16th) PP% 31.6% (1st)
73.4% (30th) PK% 84.3% (9th)
OT-L-L-L-OT Form W-W-W-W-W

The previous game versus the Bruins could have been a turning point for the team after failing to get up to their top level versus some poor teams. The result was the exact opposite, as they allowed more goals than in any other contest this season.

The Habs started out well enough, controlling the play until handing a power play to the visiting team. The result was a goal on the man advantage to put Montreal on the back foot. They fought back to get the game tied, then immediately surrendered another power-play goal seconds later. A last-minute goal from Brad Marchand sent the Canadiens to the intermission questioning their ability to fend off the Bruins, and a goal eight seconds into the middle frame convinced them that they couldn’t. Boston capitalized on nearly every offensive-zone look they got the rest of the way, ending the night with eight goals on 24 shots.

Montreal won’t have the benefit of rallying the same troops for a better effort in the third game of the season series. Victor Mete was injured in yesterday’s game versus the Flyers and didn’t make the trip. The team just added Gustav Olofsson from the AHL to play on their third pairing yesterday, and now Claude Julien needs to play one of him, Brett Kulak, and Mikey Reilly in the top four after designating them all as third-pairing options — and do that versus the second-best team in the NHL.

It’s therefore going to be extremely tough to contain the Bruins’ offence. Better structure versus a Flyers team that plays a similar style was a good sign, but the Flyers aren’t the Bruins, and they’ll once again pounce on any mistake the overstretched defence makes.

Montreal’s best chance is to score enough goals to cover the high amount the Bruins can produce, more like they did in the 5-4 victory at the start of the month when they were playing a much more solid game. Either that, or Carey Price needs to turn aside the majority of the chances the Bruins are bound to get. Without one of those two things happening, the losing streak could very well extend to eight.