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game preview

Canadiens at Rangers preview

Montreal tries to bounce back after lopsided loss; New York seeks first win of season

by Jon Lane @JonLaneNHL / Staff Writer

CANADIENS (1-1-0) at RANGERS (0-2-0)

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


The Game

The Montreal Canadiens and New York Rangers will try to recover from lopsided defeats when they face off at Madison Square Garden on Sunday.

Goalie Carey Price will start for the Canadiens; he was pulled after allowing four first-period goals in a 6-1 loss at the Washington Capitals on Saturday. Price is 15-5-1 with a 1.82 goals-against average and .940 save percentage in 22 appearances against New York.

Goalie Ondrej Pavelec was scheduled to make his first start for the Rangers, but Henrik Lundqvist will play after he was pulled after one period of an 8-5 loss at the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday. Lundqvist allowed five goals on 18 shots and has surrendered eight on 42 shots in four periods this season.

The Canadiens and Rangers play for the first time since Game 6 of the Eastern Conference First Round. The Rangers won that game 3-1 at the Garden to eliminate the Canadiens from the Stanley Cup Playoffs.


Players to watch

Shea Weber played a game-high 24:54 with an even rating Saturday and was the only Canadiens defenseman not to finish with a minus. Weber is averaging an NHL-high 27:12 through two games.

Forward Mats Zuccarello had a single-game NHL-career high four points (one goal, three assists) against the Maple Leafs and leads the Rangers with five points (one goal, four assists) through two games.


They said it

"It's early in the season. We need to learn from these things. We need to fix those things. We have an opportunity to go into New York and be much better." -- Canadiens coach Claude Julien

"There's no doubt we need to start better. Our whole group is aware of it and we're going to get the opportunity to get right back at it, so that's probably the best thing for us." - Rangers coach Alain Vigneault


Canadiens projected lineup

Max Pacioretty -- Jonathan Drouin -- Brendan Gallagher

Charles Hudon -- Tomas Plekanec -- Artturi Lehkonen

Alex Galchenyuk -- Phillip Danault -- Andrew Shaw

Paul Byron -- Jacob De La Rose -- Torrey Mitchell

Jordie Benn -- Shea Weber

Karl Alzner -- Jeff Petry

Victor Mete -- Brandon Davidson

Carey Price

Al Montoya

Scratched: Joe Morrow, Mark Streit, Ales Hemsky

Injured: David Schlemko (hand)


Rangers projected lineup

Chris Kreider -- Mika Zibanejad -- Pavel Buchnevich

Rick Nash -- J.T. Miller -- Mats Zuccarello

Jimmy Vesey -- Kevin Hayes -- Michael Grabner

Filip Chytil -- Paul Carey -- David Desharnais

Ryan McDonagh -- Marc Staal

Brady Skjei -- Kevin Shattenkirk

Brendan Smith -- Tony DeAngelo

Henrik Lundqvist

Ondrej Pavelec

Scratched: Nick Holden, Steven Kampfer

Injured: Jesper Fast (hip)


Status report

Neither team held a morning skate Sunday … Each made in-game lineup changes Saturday. Mete was moved to the third pair with Streit and Benn to the first pair with Weber. … Staal and Shattenkirk were shifted to the first and second defensive pairs, respectively. Among forward adjustments, Miller was moved from wing to center Zuccarello and Nash.


Stat pack

The Canadiens are completing the first of 14 sets of back-to-back games. They were 9-4-2 in the second of a back-to-back last season. ... The Rangers, playing the first of 11 back-to-backs, were 11-5-0 in the second of consecutive games in 2016-17 and are 64-28-6 since the start of the 2010-11 season.

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