Canadiens first round from 2009 Louis Leblanc was called up yesterday and makes his season debut for the Canadiens tonight. He will play alongside David Desharnais and Rene Bourque on the Habs third line. Leblanc is currently riding a 3 game hot streak in the AHL that saw him score six points including two overtime game winners in the three game span.
Douglas Murray will make his season and Canadiens debut tonight. The hulking 6’3 and 245 pound defender was signed in the offseason to a one year deal, adding depth to the Habs blueline. He is a slow moving defenseman who will have to rely on his size, strength and experience to be a shutdown player at even strength and help out on the penalty kill. If it were up to me, I would just leave Nathan Beaulieu in the lineup, or give Greg Pateryn a try to see how he looks. However Murray, the veteran of 465 NHL games will be given a shot to see what he can do tonight.
Travis Moen will miss tonight’s game with a facial injury, after being hit by a puck against the Sharks on Saturday night. The Canadiens depth will be really put to the test again tonight, as Leblanc, Patrick Holland and Michael Blunden will all be in the lineup, though the trio would be in Hamilton if the Habs were healthy.
Peter Budaj gets his second start of the season, after Price started six consecutive games. Budaj helped the Habs defeat the Edmonton Oilers, stopping 27 of 28 shots in a 4-1 victory on October 10th.
Game time is 7:30 PM EST.