GAME PREVIEW | Canadiens – Lightning: Vejdemo Steps in for Habs

Game Preview by Sam Gerber
Last game : MTL 6  NYI 2  F   The Habs had one of their best games of the season against the Isles. It was a full team effort that saw the Habs make the most of their chances. 

For a complete game recap: Habs Hold A Lead

Players to watch

  • Artturi Lehkonen
    Lehkonen has proven his ability to make his linemates better with his hard-working style of play. With an injury to Tomas Tatar, Lehkonen will get an opportunity on the Habs top line. 
  • Nick Suzuki
    Suzuki has been quiet in all zones of the ice for the last several games. He needs to show more taking full advantage of his top-6 position.  
  • Joel Armia
    Armia has displayed the ability to play physically and be dominant with puck possession.  

Keys to Victory

  • Play strong defence
    Tampa is second in the league for goals scored per game. The Habs can’t give them anything easy or the Bolts will strike.
  • Follow the game plan
    The Habs are a much different team than the Bolts. If the game becomes a shootout the Habs will likely loose. They must focus on their style to win.
  • Stay out of the box
    The Habs power-play doesn’t strike fear at home but they have been able to do damage on the road. Best not to take needless penalties to give Tampa a chance.
Statistical Matchup by All Habs
Amalie Arena, Tampa, FL | March 5, 7:00 PM ET | TV: TSN2, RDS, SUN

2019-20 statistics

LIGHTNING CANADIENS
87 (4th) Points (rank) 71 (23rd)
41-20-5 Record 31-28-9
21-10-2 Home/Away 17-12-3
5-5-0 Last 10 4-4-2
3.47 GF/G 3.01
2.80 GA/G 3.06
23.1 PP% 18.5
81.9 PK% 78.6
51.90  CF% 54.47
Pre-game quotes
Artturi Lehkonen

  • “All these games are huge for us. But we can’t really think about too much right now or look too far ahead. We just have to focus on Tampa and the game tonight and deal with what’s in the present.”
Projected forward lines, defense pairings and goaltenders by All Habs
Forwards
Palat – Point – Kucherov
Coleman – Cirelli – Killorn
Goodrow – Johnson – Gourde
Maroon – Paquette – Stephens
Lehkonen – Danault – Gallagher (GTD)
Hudon – Suzuki – Armia
Byron – Domi – Weal
Vejdemo – Evans – Weise
Defensemen
Hedman – Cernak
Sergachev – Shattenkirk
Coburn – Bogosian
Chiarot – Weber
Kulak – Petry
Ouellet – Folin
Out of the lineup
Scratched: Verhaeghe, Schenn 
Injured: Stamkos, Rutta, McDonagh
Scratched: Alzner
Injured: Drouin, Tatar, Mete
Goalies
Andrei Vasilevskiy Carey Price
Record: 33-13-3
GAA: – 2.61
Sv%: – .915
SO: 2
Alternate: Curtis McElhinney
Record: 27-23-6
GAA: – 2.75
Sv%: – .910
SO: 4
Alternate: Charlie Lindgren
 What to Expect by Sam Gerber
The Bolts are 5-5 in their last 10 games and recently learned that their captain Steven Stamkos will be out the rest of the season. Tampa is lucky to have plenty of high-end scoring but Stamkos isn’t an easy guy to replace. For the Habs, Tomas Tatar went back to Montreal after being injured last game and Brendan Gallagher will be a game time decision due to the flu.
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