Montreal Canadiens at Detroit Red Wings Preview


The Montreal Canadiens (36-15-4) are in Detroit on Monday to face the Red Wings (31-13-10) at Joe Louis Arena. The game starts at 7:30 and airs on RDS and Sportsnet East.

Match Up

This is the third of four meetings between the Habs and Wings this season, and the last in Detroit. The Canadiens already have a pair of wins in the first two games of this series, one in regulation, one in overtime. Tomas Plekanec and PK Subban each have a goal and two assists in two games against the Red Wings this year, Max Pacioretty, Brendan Gallagher and Alex Galchenyuk have two points each.

What to Watch

Detroit Red Wings
Detroit Red Wings /

Detroit Red Wings

Canadiens: Carey Price has given up just one goal in each of his last three starts and has allowed one or fewer in six of his last nine. Price and Pekka Rinne are locked in a two way race for the Vezina trophy with very little to separate them. Rinne has a slight edge in GAA, 1.97 to 1.98, but Price has saved a slightly higher percent of shots, .934 versus .931.

Red Wings: For Detroit, the old guard is almost ready to be replaced by the new. Veterans Henrik Zetterberg and Pavel Datsyuk still lead the Wings in points with 49 and 42 respectively, but right behind them are youngsters Tomas Tatar and Gustav Nyquist, who rank first and second on the team in goals. In his second full season with the Wings, Tatar has already set a new high for points with 41 on the season, he finished last year with 39 points in 73 games.

What’s at Stake

The Canadiens don’t have many four point games left on their schedule, but their matches against the Wings and Lightning definitely stand out. The Habs have built a nice four-point cushion over Detroit with an extra game played, but a win on Monday would help widen that gap and relieve the tiniest bit of pressure with just under 30 games left in the season.

Who’s Out

Sergein Gonchar was knocked out of Saturday’s game against the Maple Leafs with an apparent upper body injury, and Sunday, Greg Pateryn was recalled from the Bulldogs, signalling the injury to Gonchar could be serious. P.A. Parenteau (concussion) remains out as well.

The Red Wings are missing Johan Franzen (concussion) but are otherwise healthy heading in to Monday’s game. Jimmy Howard returned to action last week after a groin tear kept him out of the lineup for about a month.

What Else

PK Subban played a season high 35:21 in Montreal’s 2-1 shootout victory over the Maple Leafs on Saturday, his most by far this season. He had set his previous high for the year just two games prior, 31:18 in the team’s 2-1 OT victory against the Flyers. The increased duties has PK averaging 25:55 per game, sixth most in the league

The Question Mark

The Winnipeg Jets and Nashville Predators have already started to make trade deadline moves this past week. Which team do you expect to be most aggressive this year and which playoff contender will be quietest?

As always, we’ll be going over your answers on the Montreal Hockey Talk Habs Pregame Show, starting an hour before each Canadiens game on