Canadiens vs Penguins - Game Preview
The Habs won just one of their 4 games against the Penguins last year, with that one win coming in the shootout, can they improve on that this year?
Tonight is our first and only chance to see the Habs play the Penguins in Montreal this season. Someone talk to the NHL scheduling office about that please.
For some reason, ever since Crosby was drafted the Habs and Penguins have played amazing games against each other. It's one of the dates that you circle on the calendar, aside from all the ones against Boston.
The Penguins are a bit of a new look team this year, as the era of Crosby-Malkin-Staal down the middle is over, with Brandon Sutter taking on Staal's checking role. Evgeni Malkin is out with a concussion, joining the ever growing ranks of players over the last two weeks, along with Raphael Diaz and Rene Bourque.
Sidney Crosby though, is the same as he ever was. His 31 points in 21 games have him factoring in on 45% of Pittsburgh's goals overall, with a surprising Chris Kunitz next on the leaderboard with 24 points.
The Penguins are a high flying offensive team, with 4 different players outscoring the top scoring Hab, Max Pacioretty, however Pacioretty's scoring pace is higher than James Neal, he's just played 5 fewer games.
The most dangerous Canadiens player last season against the Penguins was Erik Cole with 2 goals and 2 assists in 4 games. Crap. Well it's all on you, Michael Ryder.
Tomas Vokoun gets the surprising start for the Penguins, in spite of his struggles recently the Czech netminder has a .925 save percentage against the Canadiens in 21 career games, so perhaps Bylsma is playing the numbers.
Game time is 7:00PM EST on HNiC and RDS.
For the view from the other side, check out PensBurgh.