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After a 4-2 win in Washington last night the Canadiens will hope to start up a winning streak this evening against an Islanders team that has slipped out of the playoff race of late and is now seven points behind the Canadiens for the 8th and final playoff spot. The Islanders who appeared to be making a charge as just last week with a win over the Devils the Islanders had won six of their last seven games sine then however the Islanders have lost three straight by a combined score of 13-6.


Montreal has won both previous meetings against the Islanders this season and although the Canadiens have not excellent offensively this season have scored nine times against the Islanders this season. Of note five of those Canadiens goals have come via the power play. Unfortunately the Canadiens penalty kill has not faired well against the Islanders this season either as the Islanders have scored three power play goals on just fourteen chances.


Cristobal Huet had a fairly boring night last night in Washington as through two periods he only faced thirteen shots. Conversely the third period was a different story as the Capitals doubled their shot total, but all in all he should have enough gas in the his tank to start tonight’s game. If Huet does start it will mark the fourth consecutive set of back-to-back games he will have played for the Canadiens this season. Huet’s record in the second game is 1-2.


Todd Simpson’s debut in a Canadiens uniform was an impressive one, as he dropped his gloves to spark his new teammates less than five minutes into the Capitals game last night. Simpson also had two shots on goal had a +/- rating of +1 and played four minutes on the penalty kill.


Alexander Perezhogin was reinserted into the line-up last night and managed to score the game-winning goal on a line with Steve Begin and Radek Bonk. Saku Koivu was reunited with Chris Higgins and Michael Ryder on the first line. Richard Zednik found his way to the second line with Mike Ribero and Alex Kovalev and the third line saw Tomas Plekanec centre Jan Bulis and Garth Murray.


Scoreboard Watching


The Canadiens may once again be caught glancing up at the out of town scoreboard, as there are three other games on the NHL schedule with implications to the Canadiens playoff hopes. The 9th place Atlanta Thrashers are visiting the TD Bank North Arena in Boston to face the Bruins. The 10th place Leafs will be hosting the Carolina Hurricanes and Philadelphia is playing host to the 7th place Devils.




Fun Facts


1.       For the first time since the final game of the 2003-2004 season there were two fights in a Canadiens game.

2.       Chris Higgins enjoys playing his hometown team as he has potted three goals in his first two career games against the Islanders.

3.       Saku Koivu who has not scored in 18 games has 1 goal and 4 assists against the Islanders this season.

4.       Miroslav Satan has also enjoyed Canadiens Islanders games this season as he scored four of the Islanders six goals against the Habs this year.