A day after falling to the Maple Leafs in the first of three meetings between Montreal and Toronto this pre-season, the Canadiens will ice a different lineup for Saturday night’s contest.
It’s the turn of Cole Caufield and Nick Suzuki once again in this alternating lineup formation the Habs are using, and tonight they will have Alex Newhook on their wing. With Christian Dvorak out for the opening portion of the season, it’s expected that Newhook will be playing centre once the regular season begins, but tonight the coaching staff will see what he can offer on the wing. The fact that we’ve seen both Sean Monahan and Newhook in that position on the right wing might be an indication that Owen Beck is getting a proper consideration for a roster spot with the team.
We will also see the duo of Kirby Dach and Juraj Slafkovský left intact from last game. Slafkovský was one of the best players in the game versus the Ottawa Senators earlier this week, and Martin St-Louis wants to see how that partnership can develop.
On defence, Kaiden Guhle will play with David Reinbacher on what could be a preview of what the top pairing will look like a few years down the line. Samuel Montembeault gets another start in net, with Jakub Dobes serving as his backup.
As for the Toronto Maple Leafs, they’re once again running with some of their lesser lights, saving their stars for Monday’s game between these teams in Toronto.