The Canadiens have been able to find success against the New York Rangers in their two previous encounters so far this season.
The most memorable moment came after the Habs 3-1 victory at MSG back on February 19, when Rangers head coach John Tortorella said that the Canadiens play a boring style of hockey. The Canadiens then responded by beating them 3-0 only four days later at the Bell Centre.
You could say that the Canadiens have been able to get under the Rangers' skin. Despite the troubles New York is having this year, they are currently trying to hold on to that eighth and final playoff spot in the East. Lars Eller knows that the Rangers are a dangerous team saying, "we must approach this game the same way as they do with Pittsburgh and Boston because there are no easy games".
The Canadiens will be getting some extra reinforcement as Brandon Prust returns to the line up after missing the last eight games with a shoulder injury. On the back-end, there's a new addition to the lineup as Nathan Beaulieu will make his NHL debut playing along side Francis Bouillon. Beaulieu was called up late yesterday morning and has yet to have a full practice with the team.
Neither Beaulieu or Michel Therrien thinks there will be an issue for him adjusting, seeing that the Hamilton Bulldogs play the same type of system as the Habs. Beaulieu, who is an offensive defenseman, is expected to get some minutes on the power play tonight.
The players that decided to take the morning off were Tomas Plekanec, Brian Gionta, Travis Moen, Josh Gorges, Max Pacioretty, Michael Ryder, David Desharnais and Carey Price.
Michael Blunden is a healthy scratch for tonight and Carey Price gets the start in goal.
Early this afternoon it was announced that defenceman Tomas Kaberle has been placed on waivers. Kabele is 35 years-old and has played only 10 games this season, accounting for three assists. He has one more year remaining on his contract, with a cap hit of 4.25 million.
Ryder - Plekanec - Gionta
Pacioretty - Desharnais - Gallagher
Prust - Eller - Galchenyuk
Moen - Halpern- Armstrong
Markov - Emelin
Gorges - Subban
Bouillon - Beaulieu