Canadiens vs. Buffalo
First Niagara Center – April 5, 2017 – 7:35pm
Lineup Changes –
….Torrey Mitchell and Brian Flynn will join Dwight King on the fourth line. This will be Flynn’s first game in 14 games. Steve Ott and Andreas Martinsen will sit along with Mike McCarron.
…On defense, Shea Weber will miss his second straight game. Nesterov and Davidson are back in.
.…Carey Price vs. Robin Lehner in goal.
Last Ten Games – Canadiens (7-2-1) Buffalo (4-6-0)
Last Time Out – Canadiens defeated the Panthers 4-1 Monday at Florida. Sabres lost to Toronto 4-2 at home Monday.
Home/Road – Canadiens on the road (22-13-4) Buffalo (19-15-6)
Head to Head –
….Season Series – Fourth of four games on the schedule. Oct. 13 @ Buffalo – Canadiens-4 Buffalo-1. Gallagher with 2 goals plus Mitchell and Shaw. Moulson for Buffalo. Montoya stops 30 of 31. Jan. 21st @ Montreal – Buffalo-3 Canadiens-2 (overtime) Bogosian scores at 1:48 over OT. Fransen ties game in third period. Lehkonen and Danault for the Canadiens. Lehner vs. Price. @Bell Centre – Jan. 31st – Canadiens-5 Buffalo-2. Hattrick Max Pacioretty. Buffalo outshot Canadiens 39-35.
….The last time the Canadiens played in Buffalo was the opening game of the season October 13th.
….The Canadiens have won seven of the last nine games in Buffalo and have at least a point in 14 of the last 17.
….The Sabres are 5-4-1 in their last ten overall games vs. the Canadiens – 3-5-2 at home. The road team has won eight of the last 12 meetings in the Buffalo/Canadiens series.
….Since the Canadiens swept a four game series in 2013-14 the Canadiens are 5-4-2 overall vs. the Sabres. Four of the 11 games were decided in overtime and another in a shootout.
….During their current five game winning streak the Canadiens defense has given up a total of 6 goals. They have outscored opponents 19-6. Goalscoring has been spread among members of the Canadiens top three lines. Lehkonen & Radulov with 3 apiece, two from Plekanec Pacioretty Gallagher and Markov plus Byron and Weber.
….The Canadiens lost two of first three games after Claude Julien took over the team on February 14th. Since then the Canadiens are posted the best record in the league at 14-3-1 (Chicago 2nd at 12-3-2 and Calgary 12-4-0). Over their last nine games they are 7-1-1.
….Julien’s overall coaching record this season Montreal is 15-5-1.
….On Monday night in Florida the Canadiens clinched their 19th division title in the last 40 years dating back to the implementation of divisional play resulting from the first NHL mass expansion in 1967. Twelve of their twenty-four Stanley Cups have come since then.
….In his last 10 road games Max Pacioretty has 12 points including seven goals.
….Pacioretty has 3 goals, 2 assists in the three games against Buffalo this season.
….Phillip Danault has five points in his last four games. He has 40 points in 79 games this season. In his 53 games prior to this season with Chicago and the Canadiens he had ten points including 4 goals.
….Alexander Galchenyuk recorded his 202nd point Monday at Florida, the most any player to come out of the 2012 draft.
….The Canadiens have won 22 road games this season. In the league only the Rangers and Chicago have recorded more (24). In the ten road games since Julien took over the team the Canadiens are 9-1-0.
….The Canadiens have lost their last three games including Monday night’s 4-2 home ice defeat by Toronto in which they allowed three goals in a 43 second span.
….Buffalo ranks 23rd in the league on home ice with a 19-15-6 record compared with 16-19-6 last season. At home this season they have scored 105 goals at home and given up 110.
….The Sabres will miss the playoffs for the sixth consecutive season and the 11th time in the last 15 seasons.
….Jack Eichel has 3 goals, 3 assists in his last five games and has 56 points in 58 games to lead the Sabres. Since he returned from injury at the end of November after missing 21 games, he is seventh among Nhl skaters with 56 points including 24 goals. In his last 37 games he has 41 points.
….Evander Kane did not score his first goal of the season until December first. Since then he has scored 27; a league leading 24 at even strength. His career best is 30 goals.
….Kane has 2 goals and six points in his last six games vs. Montreal.
….Ryan O’Reilly has three goals in his last five games and has reached the 20-goal plateau for the third time in four season.
….Alex Nylander, son of Michael and brother of William, made his NHL debut Monday night.
….In 60 starts this season Carey Price has a record of 37-18-5 with a 2.21GAA and .924 save%.
….On the road this season Price is 14-10 with a 2.46GAA.
….Career vs. the Sabres Price is 14-19 with a 2.00GAA.
….Price has allowed 19 goals in his last 13 starts dating b ack to February 28th. In that stretch he has a 1.45GAA and .946 save percentage and an 11-2-0 record.
….Over those 13 games Price has lowered his GAA from 2.42 to 2.21. Price now ranks third in the league in save% and fourth in goals against average.
….In 33 career games vs. Buffalo Price is 14-11-8 with a 2.00GAA, .932 save% and one shutout.
….Robin Lehner has been in 57 Buffalo games this season with a 22-25-10 record with a 2.70GAA and a .920 save percentage. This will be Lehner’s 31st start in the Sabres last 38 games.
….Lehner was pulled from the game Monday afer giving up three Toronto goals in the span of 43 seconds in the second period.
….Career vs. the Canadiens Lehner is 3-4-3 in 11 appearances with a 3.14GAA and .908save%. In his three appearances against the Canadiens this season he gave up 11 goals – an average of 3.67.
….Power Play – Canadiens rank13th (44/223) 19.7%. Buffalo ranks first (57/230).
….Penalty Killing – Canadiens rank 14th (47/247) 81.0%. Buffalo ranks 27th (52/229) 77.3%.
….The Canadiens power play is 0-for-14 in their last 7 road games.
….Over their last 14 games the Canadiens have three power play goals in 32 opportunities. All three of the PPG’s were scored by defensemen.
….On the road the Canadiens penalty killing ranks 25th in the league at 76.8%.
….Buffalo’s power play leads the league but their penalty killing is 27th, leaving their special teams at plus-5.
Projected Canadiens Lines & Pairings
67-Max Pacioretty 24-Phillip Danault 47-Alexander Radulov
27-Alex Galchenyuk 65-Andrew Shaw 62-Artturi Lehkonen
41-Paul Byron -14-Tomas Plekanec 11-Brendan Gallagher
21-Dwight King 92-Steve Ott 37-Andreas Martinsen
79-Andrei Markov 26-Jeff Petry
28-Nathan Beaulieu 74-Alexei Emelin
88-Brandon Davidson 89-Nikita Nesterov
Injuries – D Shea Weber (lower body); G Al Montoya (lower body). D Jordie Benn (day-to-day); C Torrey Mitchell (ill)
Scratches – C Mike McCarron; C Brian Flynn;
Buffalo Forward Lines & Pairings
9-Evander Kane 90-Ryan O’Reilly 12-Brian Gionta
82-Marcus Foligno 15-Jack Eichel 23-Sam Reinhart
70-Alexander Nylander 71-Evan Rodrigues 63-Tyler Ennis
44-Nicolas Deslauriers 28-Zemgus Girgensons 26-Matt Moulson
4-Josh Gorges 55-Rasmus Ristolainen
77-Dmitry Kulikov 47-Zach Bogosian
41 Justin Falk 6-Cody Franson
Injuries – RW Kyle Okposo (illness); D Taylor Fedun (foot); C Johan Larsson (IR wrist); C Cody McCormick (LTIR blood clotting)
Scratches – RW 49-C.J. Smith; RW William Carrier; D Jake McCabe