Game Day : Habs @ Bolts

The Montreal Canadiens are in Tampa Bay tonight to take on the Lightning.  Despite having a 14-16-7 record, the Habs actually have two more points than the Bolts (15-17-3), which may surprise a few people.  Both teams are struggling within their respective divisions and are looking to make a post holiday break splash.  

Habs coach Randy Cunneyworth came up big earlier this week collecting his first win as a head coach in the NHL, beating the Ottawa Senators 6-2.  It's a safe bet that the team we saw on the ice Tuesday night is the team fans have desperately been waiting to see.

Leading the team was Lars Eller on the top line, who scored short handed in the 1st to open the scoring.  How he stayed off the 3 stars ballot is beyond me, but  I found him to be the best Hab on the ice Tuesday night.  After a terrible start to the year, Mike Cammalleri also is deserving of a mention after his performance last Tuesday.  Cammalleri scored on a Louis Leblanc rebound and once he netted that goal it was easy to see how much confidence it gave him.  Habs fans got to see the side of Cammalleri they had been missing all season.

After returning from a potential season ending eye injury, Martin St Louis is back and hasn't missed a beat, collecting 4 points in his last 3 games.  Steven Stamkos has also been enjoying some sweet stats, collecting 13 points in the month of December.  Stamkos is leading all Bolts this year with a total of 39 points.

So which Habs team will show up tonight?  Will we be treated to another offensive-minded Habs squad, or will we go back to watching a team that struggles to hold a 1 goal lead.  My prediction is that the season has turned around and it all started with the Lars Eller shorthanded goal from last game.  Going out on the limb here to say Habs will take this game tonight 4-2.  

Price and Garon should get the green lights between the pipes.


Game starts at 7:30pm and is being aired on RDS and TSN-HABSHD.


Bon Match!


George Prax's picture

I'd hardly say that a win against the Sens would turn the season around. They should take things one game at a time and see where it goes. I'm happy for Cunneyworth and the players, but this team needs to continue losing badly for people at the top of the food chain on the Habs to wake up, so I'm conflicted as I obviously don't want to see the team lose. Should be an interesting game tonight, Habs and Bolts always put forth good matches.

Jason Pietroniro's picture

There was something about that Eller goal though. Let's not forget the little tiff between Pac and Lee. There was a spark in the team I found. Ellers goals gave me a similar feeling to that of Plekanecs in game 1 vs Washington. You know what goal Im talking about.

George Prax's picture

Ya but a goal and a fight isn't enough to cling to with 45 games left and a 5 point difference to make up to get into the playoffs. Maybe it was a matter of seeing someone show some passion or seeing something go their way finally, but I don't know, I feel like the trouble with the Habs isn't necessarily showing passion or effort, it's showing those things consistently over 60 minutes. Quite frankly they didn't even do that on Tuesday. So we'll have to see.

Jason Pietroniro's picture

I've been pretty hard on them all season, and I'm not about to say they'll make the playoffs, but I think Tuesday was by far the biggest step the team has made.. Consistency with the lines, and they seemed to have a gameplan.. something I hadn't seen yet.

George Prax's picture

Well, it has to be mentioned that it takes time for a coach's gameplan to take effect. This team was in a bad way when Cunneyworth took over, and he took over on a gameday so the New Jersey game was pretty much a throwaway. The Bruins are nuts so that was a throwaway as well. Chicago's one of the best teams in the league and Winnipeg was looking for revenge. I know it's making excuses but the truth is that it's usually harder for a new coach to win his first few games. Still, it's a matter of keeping momentum and seeing the differences continue to manifest themselves.

Jason Pietroniro's picture

No doubt, agree completely. I just had a feeling about that Eller goal. We'll see what it feels like after tonight ,lol.