Alex Tanguay is still adjusting to being with the Montreal Canadiens. But the veteran winger seems to be a perfect fit, at least given the amount of success he's had against the Phoenix Coyotes.
After getting a shootout winner from Tanguay in their home opener, the Canadiens look to continue their dominance of the Coyotes as the teams meet Saturday night.
Tanguay, acquired from Calgary in a draft-day trade in June, scored the last goal in a 4-3 shootout victory over Boston on Wednesday night in Montreal's first home game in its 100th season.
He has one goal and three assists for the Canadiens (3-0-1), all of which came in a 6-1 win over Toronto on Saturday night. After six seasons with Colorado and two with the Flames, Tanguay is doing his best to jell with his teammates.
"You know, I'm nervous, I'm still nervous, still trying to find my way with the team, trying to get my momentum and trying to get in the groove," Tanguay said.
A matchup with the Coyotes (2-2-0) gives Tanguay a good chance to build off his game-winner. He has a 10-game points streak versus Phoenix, finding the back of the net four times while adding nine assists to guide his team to an 8-1-1 record in those games.
Montreal has certainly had its share of success against the Coyotes, going 6-0-0 with three ties against them since losing 4-2 at Phoenix on Dec. 9, 1998. The Canadiens are 14-3-0 with five ties all-time against the Coyotes, including a 4-2 win at Phoenix on March 6 in the only meeting last season.
Montreal, continuing a five-game homestand, appears to have an excellent opportunity to remain without a regulation loss.
Georges Laraque, another Montreal newcomer, made his season debut Wednesday after missing the first three games due to a groin injury. He fought Bruins forward Shawn Thornton 2:28 into the contest, immediately after the Canadiens' new enforcer stepped onto the ice for his first shift.
"I know all you guys are surprised at how long it took but I'm pretty sure that this year the seven seconds will be beat a couple of times, so get used to it," said Laraque, who signed as a free agent from Pittsburgh in July.
Phoenix, meanwhile, will be without winger Daniel Carcillo due to his role in a fight in a 4-1 loss to Chicago on Wednesday night.
Carcillo sat out a 6-3 loss to Ottawa on Friday night when he began serving a two-game suspension handed down by the NHL earlier in the day. He was suspended without pay for coming off the bench to fight Chicago's Ben Eager.
The Coyotes lost that game after winning their first two, and have now allowed 10 goals in their last two contests.
"We're going up against some good teams," Phoenix coach Wayne Gretzky said. "We need some of our guys to answer the bell a little bit. ... We need some more people to step up."
The Coyotes got third-period goals from Shane Doan, Enver Lisin and Mikkel Boedker against the Senators. Doan, who leads the team with three goals, found the back of the net in last season's matchup with the Canadiens.
Doan, though, has scored just one other time in 15 career games against Montreal.
Boedker, the eighth overall pick in this year's draft, now has two goals.