Apr 11, 2013; Buffalo, NY, USA; Montreal Canadiens defenseman Nathan Beaulieu (40) during the game against the Buffalo Sabres at the First Niagara Center. Canadiens beat the Sabres 5-1. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Montreal Canadiens – Edmonton Oilers Game Preview


The Montreal Canadiens look to bounce back from an uninspiring effort on Saturday night, as they host the Edmonton Oilers tonight at the Bell Centre.

Montreal lost 2-1 to the Nashville Predators, and seemed to be spinning their wheels offensively all night, as they were outshot 37-29 by the usually offensively inept Predators.

Oct 10, 2013; Edmonton, Alberta, CAN; Montreal Canadiens forward Michael Beaulieu (49) looks for the puck in front of Edmonton Oilers (40) during the second period at Rexall Place. The Canadiens won 2-1. Mandatory Credit: Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports

Brendan Gallagher was the only goal scorer on the night for the Habs, as he jammed home a Lars Eller rebound, that was also assisted by rookie Michael Bournival, who was rewarded with his first even assist as an NHLer.

This will be the second game between the two teams already this season, after not playing at all last season. The Canadiens walked away from Rexall Place in Edmonton with a 4-1 victory just 12 days ago. The Habs youngsters proved to be too much for the Oilers defense, as Gallagher, Alex Galchenyuk and P.K. Subban combined for seven points in the win.

Unfortunately for the Canadiens, injuries continue to mount on the team, as Daniel Briere and Brandon Prust both left the game Saturday night and won’t play tonight. Prust is slated to miss a month, while Briere is only scheduled to miss about a week.

Combined with the fact Max Pacioretty is out with a hamstring injury, Alexei Emelin, Davis Drewiske and Douglas Murray are all yet to play a game, and George Parros is still out of the lineup, the Canadiens depth will be tested tonight.

The Oilers enter the game battling several injuries as well. All star winger Taylor Hall is injured for the next four weeks with a knee injury, and Sam Gagner is yet to play due to a broken jaw suffered in the pre season. Ryan Smyth will also miss tonight’s contest, and Jordan Eberle is a game time decision.

 

Canadiens Forward Lines

Sep 25, 2013; Ottawa, Ontario, CAN; Montreal Canadiens right wing Patrick Holland and Ottawa Senators defenseman Chris Philips (4) in the second period at the Canadian Tire Centre. Mandatory Credit: Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports

Galchenyuk – Eller – Gallagher

Bournival – Plekanec – Gionta

Moen – Desharnais – Bourque

Holland – White – Blunden

 

Canadiens Defense Pairings

Beaulieu – Subban

Markov – Diaz

Gorges – Bouillon

 

Canadiens Starting Goaltender

Carey Price

 

Michael Bournival gets a great opportunity as his tenacious play has earned him a promotion to the team’s second line with veterans Tomas Plekanec and Brian Gionta. He has points in back to back games, and has a chance to add to his offensive totals with an expanded offensive role tonight.

Patrick Holland and Michael Blunden make their season debuts tonight, and it will be the first game in the career of Holland. He was brought to Montreal in the trade that sent Michael Cammalleri to Calgary, and has been one of the best forwards on the Hamilton Bulldogs roster since making his professional debut over a year ago.

Nathan Beaulieu returns to the lineup tonight and will be paired with Subban, on what immediately becomes one of the fastest defense pairing in the league.

Game time is 7:30 PM EST at the Bell Centre.

Tags: Michael Bournival Montreal Canadiens Nathan Beaulieu