clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Canadiens @ Senators: Start time, Tale of the Tape, lineups, and how to watch

New, comments

The Habs will be focused on proving they’re the far better team in this afternoon’s matchup.

Montreal Canadiens v Ottawa Senators Photo by Andre Ringuette/NHLI via Getty Images

Montreal Canadiens @ Ottawa Senators

How to watch

Start time: 1:00 PM EST / 10:00 AM PST
In the Canadiens region: TSN2 (English), RDS (French)
In the Senators region: TSN5 (English), RDS (French)
Streaming: NHL.tv/NHL Live, RDS Direct, TSN Direct

The stars were aligned for one of the most lopsided games of the 2020-21 NHL season when the Montreal Canadiens hosted the Ottawa Senators on Thursday. A team with only one regulation loss was welcoming the club sitting at the bottom of the league by just about any metric, and on a nine-game winless streak. For a Canadiens team that was averaging well over four goals per game, it seems like a golden opportunity to raise that rate even further.

But the Canadiens didn’t impose themselves on their inferior opponent. In fact it was quite the opposite as the Senators were engaged right from the start, with an assertive forecheck that seemed to perplex the Habs. It was certainly a departure from the listless form Ottawa had exhibited through many of its opening 10 games.

It’s a performance the Habs want to quickly put behind them (and judging by the fact that our pageviews dropped to half of the usual number yesterday, the same is true for the fanbase). Fortunately, that opportunity has been placed before them this afternoon, with a rematch in Ottawa’s home barn less than 48 hours after the fact.

Tale of the Tape

Canadiens Statistic Senators
Canadiens Statistic Senators
7-2-2 Record 2-8-1
54.7% (4th) Corsi-for pct. 48.4% (19th)
4.18 (1st) Goals per game 2.45 (28th)
2.64 (8th) Goals against per game 4.55 (31st)
21.4% (14th) PP% 14.6% (23rd)
79.2% (19th) PK% 72.7% (26th)
0-1-0 Head-to-head 1-0-0

Despite the shocking defeat, there were some positives to take from the game. The line of Tomas Tatar, Phillip Danault, and Brendan Gallagher played it’s most dangerous game of the season to date. While they didn’t really get rewarded for all their chances, they comprised the one line that needed to get its offensive game going, so that’s good news for the future.

Less good was the general play of the other lines, ones that had looked very solid versus the other four opponents the club had faced. But the body of work for their positive play is much greater than the one off game, so they should be expected to bounce back. The story is similar for Carey Price, who has had some strong, aggressive games when he’s challenging shooters, but also some outings like Thursday’s when he’s obviously not putting everything into his play. Knowing he could have been a difference-maker for a club not at its best, he may have requested a mulligan from his head coach to step back in for the start today that likely would have gone to Jake Allen otherwise. We’ll have an answer to that when Claude Julien speaks two hours before puck drop.

Most concerning has to be how unprepared Montreal looked to face the undisputed worst team in the NHL, something especially noteworthy because the Habs did the same last season when facing the woeful Detroit Red Wings. The hope was that with all the new additions made in the off-season such a showing would be impossible this year, but now we know that is obviously not the case.

On the other hand, the embarrassing loss could lead to quite an entertaining performance today. We’ve seen that there are four lines that would challenge for top-six classifications on most NHL clubs. The Danault line will want to pick up where it left off, Josh Anderson got a quick reminder of how effective his power-forward game could be, and for really the first time in his NHL career we’ll see Nick Suzuki hell-bent on proving himself after a bad game. If all 19 players hit the ice with that same mindset, we could see the beatdown most people expected in the first meeting of the year.

Montreal Canadiens projected lineup

Forwards

Left Wing Centre Right Wing
Left Wing Centre Right Wing
Tomas Tatar Phillip Danault Brendan Gallagher
Jonathan Drouin Nick Suzuki Josh Anderson
Tyler Toffoli Jesperi Kotkaniemi Corey Perry
Paul Byron Jake Evans Artturi Lehkonen

Defencemen

Left Defence Right Defence
Left Defence Right Defence
Ben Chiarot Shea Weber
Joel Edmundson Jeff Petry
Brett Kulak Alexander Romanov

Goaltenders

Starter Backup
Starter Backup
Jake Allen Carey Price

Ottawa Senators projected lineup

Forwards

Left Wing Centre Right Wing
Left Wing Centre Right Wing
Brady Tkachuk Josh Norris Evgenii Dadonov
Nick Paul Colin White Drake Batherson
Tim Stützle Chris Tierney Connor Brown
Alex Galchenyuk Derek Stepan Austin Watson

Defencemen

Left Defence Right Defence
Left Defence Right Defence
Thomas Chabot Nikita Zaitsev
Mikey Reilly Artem Zub
Erik Brannstrom Erik Gudbranson

Goaltenders

Starter Backup
Starter Backup
Matt Murray Marcus Hogberg