GAME PREVIEW | Canadiens – Rangers: Habs Face Blueshirts at MSG

Game Preview by Sam Gerber
Last game : MTL 2  COL 3  F   A slow start against one of the best teams in the league is asking for trouble. Rookie goalie Cayden Primeau was understandably nervous and  would have wanted both first period goals back. The Habs battled back but it wasn’t enough.

For a complete game recap: Habs Lose, Kotkaniemi Hurt

Players to watch

  • Cale Fleury
    Fleury is the one Canadiens player that opposition forwards must keep track of when he is on the ice. Fleury hits with purpose.
  • Max Domi
    With the injury to Kotkaniemi, Max Domi may be getting more ice time and he needs to make the most of it. Domi has disappointed this season and needs to get his game on track.
  • Artturi Lehkonen
    Lehkonen was robbed of the tying goal by an amazing save by the Avs goalie. But it was earlier where his effort on the back-check was why the Habs depend on this player so much.

Keys to Victory

  • Control gap
    The Habs were giving the Avs way to much space to carry the puck into their zone.  The Habs have to do a much better job against the Rangers who love to attack with speed.
  • Maintain possession
    It is a completely different game when the Habs have the puck and are playing with purpose. Chasing the play has been hurting the Habs for weeks.
  • Keep focused
    The Habs need to keep playing no matter what happens. A lack of focus on the game and too much talking to the refs about missed calls has been going on for too long.
Statistical Matchup by All Habs
Madison Square Garden, New York City, NY | December 6, 7:00 PM ET | TV: TSN2, RDS, MSG

2019-20 statistics

RANGERS CANADIENS
31 (18th) Points (rank) 30 (21st)
14-10-3 Record 12-11-6
8-5-2 Home/Away 5-4-3
6-3-1 Last 10 1-6-3
3.22 GF/G 3.21
3.26 GA/G 3.45
19.4 PP% 19.3
76.4 PK% 75.0
43.26  CF% 54.35
Pre-game quotes
Nick Cousins

  • “It’s nice to get right back at it in New York. And then if we get one [on Friday], then we’ll get going.”
Projected forward lines, defense pairings and goaltenders by All Habs
Forwards
Lemieux – Zibanejad – Kakko
Panarin – Strome – Kreider
Fast – Chytil – Buchnevich
Nieves – Howden – Smith
Tatar – Danault – Gallagher
Cousins – Domi – Hudon
Lehkonen – Suzuki – Armia
Peca – Thompson – Weal
Defensemen
Skjei – Trouba
Lindgren – Fox
Hajek – Deangelo
Chiarot – Weber
Kulak – Petry
Leskinen – Fleury
Out of the lineup
Scratched: Haley
Injured: Hajek
Scratched: Reilly, Folin
Injured: Drouin, Byron, Mete, Kotkaniemi
Goalies
Alexandar Georgiev Carey Price
Record: 7-6-2
GAA: – 3.21
Sv%: – .910
SO: 0
Alternate: Henrik Lundqvist
Record: 11-9-3
GAA: – 3.13
Sv%: – .899
SO: 1
Alternate: Cayden Primeau
 What to Expect by Sam Gerber
The Canadiens are going to be tested once again, now with three forwards out due to injury. Nick Cousins has been given the biggest opportunity and to his credit has brought some energy but it simply isn’t enough. The Habs need to depend on their top players even if that means some of the Habs role players get less ice time.
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