The Montreal Canadiens hope to put a stop to the red hot New York
Rangers 7 game winning streak tonight at home. The streaky Habs are 2-2
in the past 4 games since last Saturday. making tonight’s match the 5th
in 8 days, a busy stretch for les Habitants.
The Rangers play a similar game to the Habs, with an emphasis on puck
movement, puck control, and some offensive contributions from the
blueliners. The Montreal forecheckers need to put high pressure on the Rangers defence with their speed and tenacity to create turnovers in their opponents zone. In their last match, the Habs were heavily penalized, allowing the Rangers key power play markers that lead to a 5-3 loss in New York. The Rangers currently sit in 5th place in the conference with 23 points, while the Habs are in 12th place with 19 points.
HW’s Victory Keys
Usurp The King: To defeat the Rangers, they need to focus on their
King, goaltender Henrik Lundqvist. Hank’s record is 2-0-0 with a 1.50
GAA & .956 save percentage in the last two games. The Habs shooters
need to concentrate on shooting high, since Henrik tends to play deep in
Home Crowd Advantage: While the Habs overall home record is a sub-par
3-4-3 so far, they have held a 1-4-2 record in Montreal against the
Rangers over the past few seasons.
Special Teams: Both teams have struggled on the power play (MTL
22nd/NYR 24th), but excelled on the penalty kill (MTL 4th/NYR 8th). The Habs need to avoid too many trips to the penalty box, to avoid a repeat of their last game in New York.
Hot & Cold: Forward Tomas Plekanec has managed 4 points in the past 2
games, and Max Pacioretty & Erik Cole have scored the same number of
points in 3 games. Sophmore PK Subban has picked up his offensive game,
with 4 points over the last 4 matches. Captain Brian Gionta has struggled lately, with one point in the last 4 games.