CANADIENS (0-0-2) VS. BLACKHAWKS (1-1-0)
TV: RDS, NHLN-US 7:30 p.m.
The defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks are in town for a Friday night matchup against the Canadiens. The contest marks the Habs second of three consecutive games in three nights. Michel Therrien’s troops seek redemption against the Hawks, after dropping the first game of the marathon in a 4-3 shootout loss to the Capitals.
Currently with the Canadiens on a professional tryout, Tomas Fleischmann left quite an impression in his Habs debut scoring his first preseason goal against the Capitals. The Koprivnice, CZ native and Thursday night’s second star led his linemates with four shots and 20:15 of ice time. Also tested for the first time in preseason action, the Eller-Galchenyuk-Semin line brought the Bell Centre fans to their feet with several dazzling scoring chances against the Capitals culminating in a late first period goal by Galchenyuk.
In the offseason following the Blackhawks Stanley Cup victory, their second in the last three years, postseason standouts Brandon Saad and Patrick Sharp were dealt in an attempt to alleviate salary cap constraints. The Blackhawks arrived in Montreal after splitting a home and away series against the Detroit Red Wings in their first preseason games of the season. Trevor Daley, acquired from the Dallas Stars during the offseason, made his Blackhawks debut in the Hawks’ preseason opener scoring the game winner at 1:40 of overtime.
Goaltender Scott Darling is expected in net for the Blackhawks, his first game since the Hawks’ preseason opener where he earned the game’s first star with a flawless 22 save performance against the Red Wings. Professional tryouts Lubomir Visnovsky and Jan Hejda are also expected to be in the lineup as they battle for coveted roster spots.
Carey Price and Zachary Fucale will likely split time between the pipes for the Canadiens as Dustin Tokarski and Mike Condon shared the crease against the Washington Capitals on Thursday. In addition, the Canadiens lineup will feature veterans Brendan Gallagher, Tomas Plekanec, Jeff Petry along with prospects Daniel Carr, Charles Hudon, while Jeremy Gregoire, Nicholas Blanchard and Ryan Johnston make their preseason debuts.
In the most recent meeting between the two storied franchises on December 5, 2014, the Hawks defeated the Canadiens 4-3 thanks to a late Brandon Saad goal with just 27 seconds remaining.
(Puck drop is set for 7:30 PM ET at the Bell Centre. Game will be broadcasted on RDS)
Here are the complete rosters for both teams: