It may not be time to hit the panic button just yet, but it's getting awfully close.
Following a 5-1 shellacking at the hands of the Capitals on Monday night, the Canadiens have a lot of fires to put out and a lot of decisions to make, and one of them is a pretty big one: who to put between the pipes Wednesday night for Game 4.
Jaroslav Halak started for Game 3 in Montreal but was chased from the net after allowing three goals in a six-shot span, facing 13 shots overall. Head coach Jacques Martin sent in Carey Price, who went on to stop 21 of 23 shots.
Now, the Habs' bench boss has a tough choice to make, and Montreal has no interest in being down 3-1 heading back to Washington.
It's a make-or-break game that could either see the two teams going back to the American capital deadlocked at two games apiece, or see the Caps boasting a back-breaking 3-1 series lead. Those are completely different scenarios, with the Habs either poised to strike and carry their momentum to a possible series win, or face the longshot odds of winning three straight against the powerful Capitals.
The NHL on TSN panel weighed in on Montreal's goaltending situation, and Craig MacTavish said the Habs should continue to stick with their original plan.
"You go back to Halak. I never viewed him as being responsible for any of those goals, really (on Monday)," said MacTavish. "It's a long shot for Price to come in and carry this team, given the fact that he hasn't played in so long. Based on the fact that Halak was not terrible - he was very solid for the first perod - I'd come back with him."
Former goaltender Darren Pang echoed that sentiment.
"I also would go back with Halak, just based on the situation," said Pang. "There's no reason to take him out."
Hockey Insider Bob McKenzie said there has been a tendency to go with Price during uncertain times in the past.
"In Montreal, any time there's been any little element of doubt about who will start the next game, it's usually Price," said McKenzie.
Either way, facing Alex Ovechkin and Co. is a harrowing task. Montreal has now been outscored 10-2 over the last four-plus periods of hockey.
"If you look at the numbers, it's obviously a daunting task," McKenzie said.
Who do you think will start in Game 4? Who do you think should get the start? Do you go back to Halak or take a shot with Price in net? Weigh in with the Your! Call option below.