PREVIEW GAME #71 Pittsburgh @ Canadiens (March 15/2018)

Mar 15th, 2018 | By | Category: Hockey-General News, Latest News

Preview Game #71

Dallas vs. Pittsburgh

Bell Centre – March 15th, 2018 – 7:35pm

Season Records – Canadiens 70GP (26-32-12) 64 points. 26th in the league. Pittsburgh – 71GP (40-26-5) 85pts. Second in Metropolitan Division.

Last Ten Games – Pittsburgh (5-4-1) Canadiens (3-3-4)

Home/Away – Pittsburgh on the Road (14-18-4) Canadiens at home (17-10-8)

Lineup Changes

….Canadiens have recalled centre Mike McCarron. (7g, 24pts. in 52 Laval games). Will be a healthy scratch.

….Daniel Carr back in the lineup on fourth line.  Logan Shaw will centre Hudon and Scherbak.

….Antti Niemi will make his second straight start for the Canadiens against Tristan Jarry.


….This is the first of three meetings in sixteen days this month.

…..The last time the teams met was January 18th of last season, a 4-1 Pittsburgh win at the Bell Centre. Michel Therrien was still Canadiens head coach. Sven Andrighetto scored the Canadiens lone goal. The Canadiens generated only 20 shots on goal.

….Pittsburgh has a record of 7-2-2 in their last eleven games at the Bell Centre including four wins in their las five.

….Overall the Canadiens are 9-8-6 over the last 23 meetings dating back to the start of the 2010-2011 season.

….Over the last four seasons the Canadiens are 4-3-2 vs. Pittsburgh.

….Jonathan Drouin has 6 points including 4 goals in 6 career games vs. Pittsburgh. Brendan Gallagher 5 points in 14 games (2 goals); Alex Galchenyuk 1 goal 3 assists in 13 games. Max Pacioretty (injured) has 21 points (12 goals) in 28 games.

….In 15 games at the Bell Centre Sidney Crosby has 14 points (5g, 9a). Evgeni Malkin has 20 points in 18 Bell Centre games (8g, 12a). Kris Letang has 21 points his last 18 overall games vs. Montreal (4g, 17a).

….Phil Kessel‘s 48 career points vs. the Canadiens are the second most against any team (55 vs. Ottawa).

….Antti Niemi has been in 11 career games vs. Pittsburgh with a 7-2-1, 2.38GAA and .924 save%.

….Charlie Lindgren has never faced the Penguins. Similarly, Tristan Jarry has no career starts vs. the Canadiens.

About the Canadiens

….Since the January 4th the Canadiens have taken at least a point in thirteen of fifteen home games (8-2-5) outscoring opponents 46-35.

….Montreal has now lost 13 of their last 17 overall games (4-7-6). Their wins since they recorded back to back victories vs. Anaheim & Ottawa Feb 2nd and 3rd were against the Islanders (twice), the Rangers plus Dallas on Tuesday..

.….Since December 23rd the Canadiens are 9-17-8. The nine wins are the fewest in the league over that stretch. Vancouver is next with 10 wins since Dec 23rd.

….The Canadiens offense ranks 29th in the league – 2.53 goals per game. Their defense is ranked 23rd – 3.07 goals against per game.

….The Canadiens have allowed at least one power play goal in each of their last seven games – 10 power play goals in 30 times shorthanded – a kill rate of 66%.

….Only three teams have a worse penalty killing record than the Canadiens’ 75.7% – Islanders, Philadelphia and Edmonton.

….After scoring 3 vs. Dallas Tuesday the Canadiens power play rose from 19th in the league (19.8%) to 14th (20.8%).

….The Canadiens have been shut out ten times this season – most in the NHL (Ottawa has been shut out 8 times).

….In the 53 games since November 9th the Canadiens have scored three or more goals only 23 times. Their record in those games 14-9.

….Brendan Gallagher has 5 goals, 2 assists his last eight games. In his last 23 games he has 19 points including 10 goals, 9 assists.

….Gallagher leads the Canadiens with a career high 26 goals and 43 points. He needs 4 points to equal his career high in points (47).

….Alex Galchenyuk has eight points his last eight games (4g, 4a) and 14 points his last 18 games (4g, 10a)

…..Nineteen of Galchenyuk‘s 42 points have come on the power play (7g, 12a) while 18 of Jeff Petry‘s points are on the power play (5g, 13a)

….Jonathan Drouin has 4 goals, 5 assists his last 20 games.

….Over his last three games Drouin has won 30 of 49 faceoffs – 61.2% and over the lasts five games he is at 55.1% (43 of 78).  In the seven games prior to that he won 36 pf 96 – 37.5%.   For the season he is at 41.3%.

….With the Canadiens Antti Niemi is 5-2-4 with 2.30GAA and .933 save%.

….Niemi has not lost a game in regulation time in his last six starts (3-0-3). In that stretch he has stopped 210 of 221 shots for a save percentage of .950.

….Before Pittsburgh placed him on waivers Oct. 23rd, Niemi made three starts for them, all losses. He gave up 16 goals on 79 shots for a .797 save% and 7.49GAA.

….Charlie Lindgren has given up 16 goals on 90 shots in losing his last three starts. His save % over the three games is .822,

….The Canadiens have nine players on their current injury list – equalling Vegas for most in the league. As a result, their roster now has six Laval players on recall since mid February (defensemen Juulsen, Valiev, Lernout; goaltender Lindgren; forwards Scherbak plus Mike McCarron who was called up Wednesday)

….Without their most promising prospects, Laval has won only two of eight games in March (2-6-0) and have been outscored 34-20. The Rocket currently are 27th in the 30 team AHL and the Canadiens top affiliate (Laval-St. John’s-Hamilton) will miss the playoffs for the seventh consecutive season and the 6th under head coach Sylvain Lefebvre. Randy Cunneyworth was the last head coach to put a Canadiens/AHL team in the playoffs – the 2010-11 Hamilton Bulldogs.

About the Penguins

….The Penguins are locked in a points tie with Washington atop the Metropolitan Division. Washington holds first place by virtue of having played two fewer games. The top three teams in the Eastern Conference are all from the Atlantic Division (Tampa/Boston/Toronto)

….The Penguins have a surprisingly weak 14-18-4 road record this season. (At home they are 26-8-1)

…..Since the New Year the Penguins have a record of 21-8-3. Prior to that they were 19-18-3.

….The Penguins offense is ranked 5th in the league at 3.24 per game. They allow 2.99 goals per game which is 20th in the league.

….This is the second of back-to-back games for Pittsburgh (they lost 4-3 in OT at NY Rangers Wednesday night). The Rangers have three more back-to-back sets in the final 3 ½ weeks of the season. The Penguins have a league high 19 back-to-back sets this season.

….Goaltender Tristan Jarry has a record of 5-0-2 when starting the second half of back-to-back games. On the road this season Tristan Jarry has won 5 of 11 starts with a 2.81GAA and .912 save%.

….Since the New Year Evgeni Malkin leads all players with 25 goals and 51 points in 32 games. Sidney Crosby is second in that span with 41. In the race for the Art Ross Trophy Malkin’s 87 points are second to Nikita Kucherov’s 91.

….Malkin needs one goal to reach 40 for the third time in his career. He has 919 career points. The only Russian-born players with more career points are Fedorov (1,179; Ovechkin (1,109) Mogilny (1,032 and Kovalev (1,029)

….On the Penguins, Malkin leads with 91 points, Phil Kessel is second with 78 (incl. 28 goals); Crosby third with 76 poins (23 goals).

….In eight games since being acquired at the trade deadline Derick Brassard has 1 goal, 2 assists while centering a line with Phil Kessel and now, Bryan Rust.

….Since goaltender Matt Murray suffered a concussion in practice Feb. 26th Pittsburgh has a record of 4-4-1. In ten games between his personal leave of absence in January and his injury Murray posted an 8-0-1 record with a .926 save%. In his absence backups Tristan Jarry and Casey DeSmith have an .891 save%.

….The Penguins power play is best in the league at 25.6%. However they have only 3 goals in their last 25 opportunities over eight games.

Goaltending –

….In 19 games with Pittsburgh/Florida/Canadiens this season Antti Niemi has a 5-6-4 record with a 3.20GAA and .909 save%.

….Tristan Jarry in 25 appearances is 13-6-2 with 2 shutouts, 2.76GAA and a .910save%.


Special Teams Power Play – Pittsburgh ranks first (58/227) 25.6% Canadiens rank 14th (44/212) 20.8%. Penalty Killing – Pitttsburgh ranks 14th (45/233) 80.7%. Canadiens rank 28th (44/212) 75.7%.

Canadiens Lines & Pairings

41-Paul Byron 92-Jonathan Drouin 11-Brendan Gallagher

27-Alex Galchenyuk 25-Jacob de la Rose 62-Artturi Lehkonen

54-Charles Hudon 49-Logan Shaw 38-Nikita Scherbak

20-Nicolas Deslauriers 42-Byron Froese 43-Daniel Carr

28-Mike Reilly 26-Jeff Petry

22-Karl Alzner 58-Noah Juulsen

8-Jordie Benn 36-Brett Lernout

37-Antti Niemi

Healthy Scratches – C Mike McCarron;

Injuries – RW Andrew Shaw (concussion protocol); D Rinat Valiev (lower body); D David Schlemko (lower body); C Phillip Danault (concussion); LW Max Pacioretty (knee); D Victor Mete (broken finger); G Carey Price (concussion); D Shea Weber (IR broken foot); RW Alex Hemsky (IR concussion)

Pittsburgh Forward lines & Pairings

59-Jake Guentzel 87-Sidney Crosby 43-Conor Sheary

62-Carl Hagelin 71-Evgeni Malkin 72-Patric Hornqvist

17-Bryan Rust 19-Derick Brassard 81-Phil Kessel

34-Tom Kuhnhackl 16-Josh Jooris 37-Carter Rowney

8-Brian Dumoulin 58-Kris Letang

6-Jamie Oleksiak 4-Justin Schultz

3-Olli Maatta 2-Chad Ruhwedel

35-Tristan Jarry

Injuries -G Matt Murray (concussion); C Dominic Simon (lower body); C Zach Aston-Reese (upper body)

Healthy Scratches – D Matt Hunwick

2 Comments to “PREVIEW GAME #71 Pittsburgh @ Canadiens (March 15/2018)”

  1. Ron says:

    AHL affiliate missing the playoffs for the 7th consecutive year?? Yes, they’ve had very little success, but the IceCaps did make the playoffs last year (2016-17).

  2. reusch says:

    My bad. Missed last season. Should rephrase it as “The Canadiens AHL-affiliate has won one playoff game in the last seven years.” Still a disturbing record.

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