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Preview: Canadiens at Islanders

Backup Al Montoya to start in goal for Montreal, New York could be without forward Nikolay Kulemin

by David Satriano @davidsatriano / NHL.com Staff Writer

CANADIENS (5-0-1) at ISLANDERS (3-3-0)

7 p.m. ET; SN1, RDS, MSG+, NHL.TV

 

Canadiens team scope

Al Montoya will start in goal for the Montreal Canadiens, who practiced Tuesday before flying to New York. Montoya, who last started Oct. 18 and played for the New York Islanders for two seasons from 2010-12, is 2-0-1 with a 1.30 goals-against average and a .962 save percentage. "It's a special place to me, but now that they're in Brooklyn I look forward to going there and getting a win," Montoya told the Canadiens website on Tuesday. Carey Price (3-0-0) has started each of the past three games and is likely to play against the Tampa Bay Lightning at home on Thursday. Defenseman Mikhail Sergachev, the No. 9 pick in the 2016 NHL Draft, will be a healthy scratch for the third straight game. "We want [Sergachev] to grow as a player," coach Michel Therrien said. "I can't say when he'll be back in the lineup because we're pleased the six defensemen we have right now." Montreal has allowed nine goals in six games (1.5 per game), a big reason the Canadiens haven't lost in regulation this season.

 

Islanders team scope

Forward Nikolay Kulemin left practice early Tuesday, and coach Jack Capuano said he will be a game-time decision after sustaining an injury on Sunday. "If he can go, great, if he can't, then we obviously will have to switch the lines," Capuano said. The likely replacement would be rookie Mathew Barzal, who has been a healthy scratch in five of New York's six games. "I've always said I'd like to get him in there, we just have to try and find the right time," Capuano said. Rookie forward Anthony Beauvillier grew up a Canadiens fan in Quebec. "It's going to be special," he said of playing Montreal. "It's going to be a hard game obviously. They have a pretty good team with their new guys like [Shea] Weber and [Andrew] Shaw, so it's going to be a hard game for us tonight." The 19-year-old has five points in five games. "I don't live for points here, I'm just trying to stay in the lineup and buy another game every day. I've played well so far so I just have to keep going." Goaltender Thomas Greiss, who got the win Sunday in a 6-3 victory against the Minnesota Wild, is expected to start. This is the final game of a five-game homestand for the Islanders, who've won three of the first four. They play at the Pittsburgh Penguins on Thursday.

 

Canadiens projected lineup

Max Pacioretty -- Alex Galchenyuk -- Brendan Gallagher

Artturi Lehkonen -- Tomas Plekanec -- Alexander Radulov

Paul Byron -- David Desharnais -- Andrew Shaw

Phillip Danault -- Torrey Mitchell -- Brian Flynn

Alexei Emelin -- Shea Weber

Andrei Markov -- Jeff Petry

Nathan Beaulieu -- Greg Pateryn

Al Montoya

Carey Price

Scratched: Mikhail Sergachev, Daniel Carr

Injured: Zach Redmond (broken foot)

 

Islanders projected lineup

Andrew Ladd -- John Tavares -- Josh Bailey

Anders Lee -- Brock Nelson -- Jason Chimera

Anthony Beauvillier -- Ryan Strome -- Alan Quine

Nikolay Kulemin -- Casey Cizikas -- Cal Clutterbuck

Nick Leddy -- Travis Hamonic

Thomas Hickey -- Johnny Boychuk

Calvin de Haan -- Dennis Seidenberg

Thomas Greiss

Jaroslav Halak

Scratched: Jean-Francois Berube, Mathew Barzal

Injured: Shane Prince (lower body), Ryan Pulock (lower body)

 

Status report

The Canadiens likely will dress the same skaters as they did in their 3-1 win against the Philadelphia Flyers on Monday, meaning Sergachev and Carr will not play. ... Capuano said Prince, who sustained a lower-body injury on Oct. 15, is progressing. "He is starting to condition himself now to get back to where he needs to be." The Islanders signed forward Steve Bernier to a two-way contract on Monday. Bernier cleared waivers Tuesday and was assigned to Bridgeport of the American Hockey League. He had one goal and six points in 24 games with New York last season.

 

Who's hot

Weber leads the Canadiens in points (seven) and is plus-10. Gallagher has four goals in six games and points in five of six games. ... Tavares has three goals and five points in his past four games. Beauvillier is tied for the team lead with five points (one goal). The Islanders lead the League in penalty-killing, having killed off 21 of 22 penalties (95.5 percent).

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