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

Montreal hopes to solve its offensive woes against Arizona.

It seems like it’s the same old story for the Montreal Canadiens. Their offensive woes continue to mount (their 144 goals rank 29th) and they’ve found themselves behind the eight ball far too often this season.

Last night, Montreal (22-27-7) was shut out for the eighth time in 56 games, and for the second time in the month of February, as the Colorado Avalanche, backed by a 44-save performance from Semyon Varlamov, shut down the Habs 2-0 on Wednesday night. The Canadiens weren’t able to solve Varlamov, but not for a lack of trying, as they peppered him with 35 shots in the final two periods. Backup goaltender Antti Niemi made 23 saves but saw his personal two-game winning streak come to an end.

Montreal will turn to Carey Price between the pipes tonight. His 15 wins are the lowest he’s recorded since the 2009-10 season when he tallied just 13 victories. His goals against average of 2.92 is the highest ever in his career.

The Canadiens might get a huge boost this evening as they travel to the desert to face the 31st NHL ranked Arizona Coyotes. Phillip Danault, who has been out with a concussion since January 13 after doing battle with the Bruins, is a game-time decision. Danault had seven goals and 23 points before his injury so having him back in the lineup couldn’t hurt. However, forwards Andrew Shaw and Ales Hemsky, along with defenceman Shea Weber, are all still out with lingering injuries.

Although it’s the second game in as many nights, Arizona has the lowest amount of home wins among all NHL clubs with seven so far this season, which could play in the Habs favour. On the other hand, Montreal has lost their last three games and the Coyotes have won their last two.

The desert dogs are a young team led by rookie standout Clayton Keller, who leads the team with 16 goals and 40 points. The Coyotes (15-32-10) have had a disappointing season thus far, struggling from the very beginning when they lost their first 11 contests at the start of the campaign. They’ve shown resurgence lately, winning three of their last four games (3-0-1) and outscoring their opponents by a combined 15-9.

These two teams have already faced off against each other once this season, back on November 16, where Arizona prevailed 5-4 at the Bell Centre. The win was the Coyotes’ first regulation victory of the season.

With the playoff light dimming by each game, Montreal really does need to bounce back and string a few wins together. It won’t be easy, but it’s do or die time.

Puck drop is at 9:00 PM EST / 6:00 PM PST

How to watch

In Canada: TSN2 (English), RDS (French)
In the Coyotes region: FS-A
Elsewhere: GameCentre Live, NHL Center Ice

Montreal Canadiens projected lineup


Left WingCentreRight Wing
Max PaciorettyCharles HudonArtturi Lehkonen
Paul ByronTomas PlekanecBrendan Gallagher
Alex GalchenyukJonathan DrouinNikita Scherbak
Daniel CarrJacob de la RoseLogan Shaw


Left DefenceRight Defence
Karl AlznerJeff Petry
Joe MorrowJordie Benn
Victor MeteDavid Schlemko


Carey Price
Antti Niemi

Arizona Coyotes projected lineup


Left WingCentreRight Wing
Brendan PerliniDerek StepanClayton Keller
Richard PanikChristian DvorakChristian Fischer
Zac RinaldoMax DomiTobias Rieder
Jordan MartinookBrad RichardsonNick Cousins


Left DefenceRight Defence
Oliver Ekman-LarssonJason Demers
Jakob ChychrunNiklas Hjalmarsson
Kevin ConnautonAlex Goligoski


Antti Raanta
Scott Wedgewood

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