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Habs, Bruins meet with first place on the line

by Brian Compton

CANADIENS (13-4-4) at BRUINS (14-2-2)


Last 10: Montreal 7-0-3; Boston 8-1-1.

Season series: This is the second of four meetings. Boston earned a 2-1 victory against Montreal on Feb. 6 at the Bell Centre.

Big story: One of the best rivalries in all of sports resumes Sunday night, and first place in the Eastern Conference will be on the line. The Canadiens and Bruins are currently tied for first in the East with 30 points apiece.

Team scope:

Canadiens: In a highly-entertaining, seesaw affair Saturday night, the Canadiens dropped a 7-6 overtime decision on home ice against the Pittsburgh Penguins. Brian Gionta scored twice for Montreal, but Carey Price stopped just 29 of 36 shots in a game that saw both teams provided with too much time and space.

"The best thing I can say about this game is that we came back and got a point," Canadiens coach Michel Therrien said after his team got a point for the 10th straight game (7-0-3), their longest such streak since late in the 1993-94 season. "This was a great game for the fans -- but this is the reason why coaches get gray hair."

Bruins: Boston enters Sunday’s action riding a six-game winning streak. The Bruins continued their torrid pace Saturday afternoon at TD Garden, when they earned a 3-2 victory against the Tampa Bay Lightning. Tyler Seguin, Rich Peverley and Brad Marchand all scored for Boston, while Anton Khudobin made 20 saves in a rare start.

Marchand leads the Bruins with 11 goals – including four game-winners.

"Those are the goals you want to get, the important ones," Marchand said. "Again, it's at the right time. I think one I scored in the second period. That's how it goes sometimes. I don't look too much into it. It's just continue to do the little things right and hopefully the goals come."

Who’s hot: Canadiens winger Max Pacioretty has five goals in his past five contests. … Marchand has three goals and two assists in the past five games.

Injury report: The Canadiens are missing Raphael Diaz and Rene Bourque due to concussions, along with Petteri Nokelainen (lower body).

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