Rabid Habs

Game Day Preview: Habs vs. Rangers

Both the Canadiens and Rangers will have a chance to pick themselves up off the mat on Sunday night, when the two teams meet at Madison Square Garden.

Of course, the game also marks the first chance for the Habs to seek revenge for an early playoff exit at the hands of the New York Rangers last spring. Tonight’s game at MSG will be the Habs only game in Manhattan, as the two clubs’ other two meetings this year will take place at the Bell Centre.

While the Rangers also gave up a boat load of goals on Saturday night, unlike Montreal, they scored a bunch, finding the back of the net five times.

Last season, each team looked a little like this:

 

Montreal Team NY Rangers
47-26-9 (103 pts) Record 48-48-6 (102 pts)
226 (15th) Goals For 256 (4th)
200 (4th) Goals Against 220 (13th)
19.57% (13th) Powerplay 20.26% (10th)
81.12% (14th) Penalty Kill 79.91% (19th)

 

While the style of both teams probably hasn’t changed too much, both teams made some personnel changes over the summer, with the Rangers’ most notable addition being the free-agent signing of Kevin Shattenkirk. The New Rochelle, New York native projects to be Ryan McDonagh’s partner on a Rangers blue line that is looking to get younger. With Brady Skjei looking to take a more prominent role and the buyout of Dan Girardi, the Rangers defense is trying to get faster as well.

Up front, the Rangers signed a familiar face. David Desharnais joins the Blueshirts after finishing last year with the Edmonton Oilers. He’s played on the fourth line for the Rangers this year, on a team with a ton of forward depth.

Lineups

Despite the Rangers and the Canadiens having elite starting goaltending, both team’s starters were pulled on Saturday night. Carey Price allowed four goals in the first against the Washington Capitals, while the Henrik Lundqvist gave up five on 15 shots before getting the hook as well.

Price will get the nod tonight, as he was probably pulled Saturday night to give him rest on a quick turnaround in the schedule. Lundqvist will get the night off, as Ondrej Pavalec will get his first start as a New York Ranger.

Other than goaltenders, expect similar lineups.

Enough talking. Enjoy the game tonight, everyone! Go Habs Go!

Radio: TSN690

Watch: RDS, Sportsnet, NHLNetwork-US, MSG, NHL.tv (Outside of the US)

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