On Friday, the Habs (7-0-0) will look to make it eight straight wins to start the season for the first time in franchise history as they travel to Buffalo to take on the Sabres (2-4-0). Here are your game notes.
As has been the case all year thus far, Montreal’s lines and defence pairings remain intact meaning that Paul Byron, Greg Pateryn, and Jarred Tinordi will continue to wait their turn to make their season debuts. The Canadiens will, however, make a change between the pipes as rookie Mike Condon will make his second career start with Carey Price likely to get the nod on Saturday against the Maple Leafs.
The Sabres are coming off a shootout victory on Wednesday night over Toronto, a game in which highly-touted acquisition Evander Kane picked up his first goal of the season. Chad Johnson got the victory in goal for Buffalo and is expected to get the start for this game as well.
Projected Montreal Lines:
Max Pacioretty – Tomas Plekanec – Brendan Gallagher
Lars Eller – Alex Galchenyuk – Alexander Semin
Tomas Fleischmann – David Desharnais – Dale Weise
Brian Flynn – Torrey Mitchell – Devante Smith-Pelly
Andrei Markov – P.K. Subban
Alexei Emelin – Jeff Petry
Nathan Beaulieu – Tom Gilbert
Mike Condon (confirmed starter)
Injuries: Michael Bournival
Scratches: Paul Byron, Greg Pateryn, Jarred Tinordi
Projected Buffalo Lines:
Evander Kane – Ryan O’Reilly – Sam Reinhart
Tyler Ennis – Jack Eichel – Brian Gionta
Matt Moulson – Zemgus Girgensons – Marcus Foligno
Nicolas Deslauriers – Johan Larsson – Jamie McGinn
Josh Gorges – Rasmus Ristolainen
Jake McCabe – Mark Pysyk
Mike Weber – Cody Franson
Chad Johnson (confirmed starter)
Injuries: Zach Bogosian, Robin Lehner, Cody McCormick
Scratches: Carlo Colaiacovo, David Legwand
– This game marks the first time that Torrey Mitchell and Brian Flynn, both acquired from Buffalo in separate trade deadline day deals, will face their former team.
– Montreal leads in the NHL in shots on goal per game (34.3). However, the Sabres allow the second fewest shots per game in the league (25.3).
– Buffalo forward Ryan O’Reilly had his impaired driving case delayed on Thursday for the fourth time. It’s now scheduled for November 5th.
– The Habs struggled against Buffalo last season, posting just a 1-2-1 record while scoring only seven goals (noteworthy given that the Sabres allowed more goals than any Eastern Conference team in 2014-15).
– David Desharnais has had some success vs Buffalo in his career, posting 16 points in 22 games. That’s his second highest point versus any opponent in the league (he has 19 points against Boston).
Puck drop is at 7:00 PM and can be seen regionally on City Montreal and RDS as well as nationally on the NHL Network in the US.