Game Day : Hurricanes @ Habs

The Caroline Hurricanes (6-9-3) are in town tonight to face off against the Montreal Canadiens (7-7-3).  This will mark the first time these teams meet this season and  to make matters more interesting, this will be Erik Cole's first encounter with his former team after being aquired by the Habs during the off season.

The Habs have won two of their last three games, with both wins coming in overtime.  As character building as that may be, the Habs are still lacking consistency and the ability to close out a game.  Two nights ago they gave up a 2-0 lead against Buffalo, and ended up losing to them in the shootout.  

Carey Price shared his frustrations with the fans following the shootout, breaking his stick on his way to the locker room.  Carey can't be blamed for his actions, he was basically left out to dry once the Habs offense got the two goal advantage.  You simply cannot sit back against a team like Buffalo who are known this season for their offensive ability, a tough lesson learned by a very fragile team.

The Hurricanes have their own issues to deal with, their Captain Eric Staal is off to the worst start off his career.  With only 8 points in 18 games and an overall -17 on the year, Eric is a far cry away from the player everyone knows he can be.  There has been speculation that Staal's hit on his brother Marc at the end of last season is the cause.  

Eric threw a big hit in a somwhat meaningless game late in the season last year that actually concussed his brother Marc.  Since the hit, Marc has not played a game and it doesn't look like he will be back anytime soon.  Perhaps a guilty concience is what is causing the Olympic Gold Medalist some early season jitters.  There has been signs of improvement for Eric though, as he has 3 points in his last two games.

As if the Habs injury list couldn't get any longer, defenceman Jaroslav Spacek left last game with an undisclosed injury and there is still no indication whether or not he will be in the lineup tonight.  Mike Cammalleri missed last game but did practice yesterday and will be in the lineup tonight.  Hal Gill is also on the sidelines with flu like symptons and will most likely sit tonight's game out.

Carolina defenseman Joni Pitkanen has been day-to-day with a lower body injury, no word if he will be in the lineup either.  Lot's of mystery this year surrounding injuries, perhaps a few calls to some players mothers can clear up a few questions.

Jeff Skinner has the hot hands in Carolina at the moment, he's got 4 points in his last two games.  While Carolina has lacked consistency with productivity, Skinner is showing no signs of a sophmore slump.  

As for the Habs, the line of David Desharnais, Erik Cole, and Max Pacioretty is heating up, combining for 9 points in their last 3 games.

Niether Cam Ward nor Carey Price have been confirmed for tonight's game but I expect both to get the call.  

Game Starts at 7:00pm and is being aired on RDS and TSN.

Bon match!

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A few notes:

  • The game is on TSN, so no one tune into RDS.
  • How is Gomez not wearing a Hamilton Bulldogs jersey by now?
  • Anyone else notice that the Habs couldn't control the tempo of Monday's game against Buffalo because they had no solution to them taking runs at them once the momentum changed hands.  

And Finally, a tweet I've enjoyed this morning.

 Darren Dreger 
 
Leafs offered a player and 2nd round pick from undisclosed team for Franson. Evidently, depth on D is highly valued in Toronto.

 

Does Dregs work for Toronto? Find it odd as to what information he shares with his followers somtimes. 

3 Comments

George Prax's picture

The Habs were missing Gill and Spacek by the end of Monday's game. Weber and Diaz are far from being well-rounded defensemen, and who knows what's going on with Emelin. You can only ask for so much from Gorges and Subban. While inconsistency is obviously the right word for the season, there really wasn't much they could have done within that game to change the outcome, not with this coach anyway.

Jason Pietroniro's picture

I am however very glad to see Gomez playing wing on the 4th. I like that message.

George Prax's picture

Two years too late...