Rabid Habs

Preview: Canadiens @ Senators

Senators Game Day

Coming off a tough loss to the Chicago Blackhawks Tuesday night at the Bell Centre, le bleu, blanc et rouge will be thrown back into action against their deeply hated rival; the Ottawa Senators. Winning this game is  important for the Habs if they hope to hold on to their division lead. With two games at hand, the Senators are just one point behind the Habs for the division lead.

This game will most definitely be a tough task for the Canadiens, considering the abundance of highly proficient players the Senators currently possess. Players such as Erik Karlsson, Mark Stone, Mike Hoffman, Kyle Turris and Derick Brassard are certainly players the Canadiens will have to neutralize to earn that hard fought win. Carey Price is expected to get the start tonight vs. the Senators.

Additionally, Alexei Emelin has played himself out of the lineup, and will be a healthy scratch against the Senators on Saturday night. Nathan Beaulieu draws back into the lineup, and will play alongside Jordie Benn.

The last time the two respected teams went head to head was all the way back on the 22nd of November. Unfortunately, Montreal lost a closely contested match by the score of 4-3. Mike Hoffman, Derick Brassard, Mark Stone and Erik Karlsson lit the lamp for Ottawa while Shea Weber, Alex Radulov and Alex Galchenyuk chipped in for Montreal.

The Numbers Game:

Montreal Canadiens

Statistic

Ottawa Senators

39-23-8

Record

39-23-7

191

GF

184

2.73

GFA

2.66

176

GA

177

2.51

GAA

2.57

7-3-0

L10

7-2-1

CHI 4 MTL 2

Last Game

CHI 2 OTT 1

 

Who’s hot? Who’s cold?

Cold: Derick Brassard has been playing some atrocious hockey as of late, contributing 1 goal and 1 assist in his last 11 games. Brassard’s recent woes are not for a lack of trying, though. The Hull native registered 26 shots on net during his most recent scoring slump. His shooting percentage amidst his slump is a catastrophic 3.8%. Those numbers will most likely regress in the near future noting that his career shooting percentage is 11%, respectively. The Habs will need to keep their eye on the slumping centre to make sure he doesn’t bust out of his recent struggles.

Hot: Mike Hoffman is a regular contributor for the Senators, so it’s to no surprise that he’s been playing some spectacular hockey as of late, compiling 2 goals and 8 assists in 10 games. Hoffman drives the Sens offensive play night in and night out.

Top 5 point producers (Ottawa vs. Montreal)

Ottawa:

  1. Erik Karlsson: 13 G – 50 A – 63 P (69 GP)
  2. Mark Stone: 22 G – 28 A – 50 P (63 GP)
  3. Mike Hoffman: 21 G – 28 A – 49 P (63 GP)
  4. Kyle Turris: 23 G – 22 A – 45 P (66 GP)
  5. Derick Brassard: 12 G – 23 A – 35 P (69 GP)

Montreal:

  1. Max Pacioretty: 33 G – 27 A – 60 P (70 GP)
  2. Alexander Radulov: 15 G – 32A – 47 P (65 GP)
  3. Alex Galchenyuk: 15 G – 25 A – 40 P (49 GP)
  4. Shea Weber: 16 G – 23 A – 39 P (70 GP)
  5. Paul Byron: 19G – 16 A – 35A (69 GP)

Game starts at 7:00 and can be found on TVA and Sportsnet.

Follow Robert Brown on Twitter @TheStandardBrit and follow @rabidhabs for more updates!