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

Credit: David Kirouac-USA TODAY Sports

Game 2: Montreal Canadiens vs. Chicago Blackhawks

How to watch

Start time: 7:00 PM EDT / 4:00 PM PDT
In Canada: Sportsnet East/360, CityTV (English), TVA Sports (French)
Streaming: ESPN+, Sportsnet Now

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The 2023 playoff picture all came down to a matchup between the Pittsburgh Penguins and Chicago Blackhawks last season. The Montreal Canadiens happened to hold the first-round pick of the Florida Panthers, the team Pittsburgh could eliminate with a win. Instead, the Blackhawks won that game, the Panthers made the playoffs and advanced to the Stanley Cup Final, and a pick that would have been involved in the draft lottery became the 31st selection instead.

Rather than having what could have been a mid-tier pick in the opening round, the Canadiens instead swapped that Panthers pick and a second-rounder to acquire Alex Newhook, a player whom Kent Hughes and Martin St-Louis believed they could fit directly into the style of play they wanted. In the opening game of the season, Newhook netted two goals for Montreal, validating the decision to turn future potential into immediate impact.

Newhook and his teammates take on the prize from the 2023 NHL Draft when they welcome Connor Bedard to the Bell Centre. While Newhook is filling in one of the missing pieces of the Canadiens’ rebuild, Bedard is the seed that Chicago will be building around over the next several years. We’ll get a glimpse of what the future could look like for both teams, but the Habs are much further along the path to contention and should be able to put together their first win of the year.

Montreal Canadiens projected lineup

Left Wing Centre Right Wing
#22 Cole Caufield #14 Nick Suzuki #17 Josh Anderson
#35 Alex Newhook #77 Kirby Dach #20 Juraj Slafkovský
#70 Tanner Pearson #91 Sean Monahan #11 Brendan Gallagher
#49 Rafaël Harvey-Pinard #71 Jake Evans #56 Jesse Ylönen
Left Defence Right Defence
#8 Mike Matheson #58 David Savard
#21 Kaiden Guhle #26 Johnny Kovacevic
#72 Arber Xhekaj $54 Jordan Harris
Starter Backup
#35 Samuel Montembeault #34 Jake Allen

Chicago Blackhawks projected lineup

Left Wing Centre Right Wing
Taylor Raddysh Connor Bedard Ryan Donato
Tyler Johnson Lukas Reichel Andreas Athanasiou
Nick Foligno Jason Dickinson Corey Perry
Boris Katchouk Cole Guttman Reese Johnson
Left Defence Right Defence
Alex Vlasic Seth Jones
Kevin Korchinski Connor Murphy
Wyatt Kaiser Jarred Tinordi
Starter Backup
Petr Mrazek Arvid Soderblom