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Canadiens at Senators preview

Price starts in goal for Montreal; Norris to make NHL debut with Ottawa

by Callum Fraser / Independent Correspondent

CANADIENS (28-27-8) at SENATORS (21-29-11)



The Game

Josh Norris will make his NHL debut for the Ottawa Senators when they host the Montreal Canadiens at Canadian Tire Centre on Saturday.

The 20-year-old forward, chosen by the San Jose Sharks in the first round (No. 19) of the 2017 NHL Draft and traded to the Senators on Sept. 13, 2018, is third in the American Hockey League in scoring with 58 points (30 goals, 28 assists) in 51 games.

Carey Price will start in goal for Montreal, which is 1-4-1 in its past six games. The Canadiens are eight points behind the Toronto Maple Leafs for third place in the Atlantic Division and nine points behind the Columbus Blue Jackets for the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Eastern Conference.

Canadiens defenseman Karl Alzner will play his first NHL game since Jan. 10, 2019, after being recalled from Laval of the AHL.


Players to watch

Canadiens forward Ilya Kovalchuk has 44 points (27 goals, 17 assists) in 42 games against Ottawa.

Senators forward Brady Tkachuk has seven points (two goals, five assists) in his past five games.


They said it

"He went to Laval with a great attitude; there's absolutely nothing on the personal side with Karl that is an issue. The players are happy he's back. Even us as a coaching staff, we're glad that he's getting another opportunity to come here. And hopefully he can help us out." -- Canadiens coach Claude Julien on Karl Alzner

"He's a great, all-around, 200-foot player. I think when you look at his game, he can skate, he can make plays and he can shoot the puck. He's got 30 goals in a tough American Hockey League. He's a great kid too, and he's fun to be around." -- Senators forward Drake Batherson on Josh Norris


Canadiens projected lineup

Tomas Tatar -- Phillip Danault -- Brendan Gallagher

Jonathan Drouin -- Nick Suzuki -- Joel Armia

Paul Byron -- Max Domi -- Ilya Kovalchuk

Artturi Lehkonen -- Nate Thompson -- Nick Cousins

Ben Chiarot -- Shea Weber

Brett Kulak -- Jeff Petry

Karl Alzner -- Christian Folin

Carey Price

Charlie Lindgren

Scratched: Jordan Weal, Dale Weise

Injured: Victor Mete (lower body), Xavier Ouellet (upper body)


Senators projected lineup

Brady Tkachuk -- Jean-Gabriel Pageau -- Anthony Duclair

Nick Paul -- Josh Norris -- Drake Batherson

Artem Anisimov -- Chris Tierney -- Connor Brown

Tyler Ennis -- Colin White -- Jayce Hawryluk

Thomas Chabot -- Ron Hainsey

Mike Reilly -- Nikita Zaitsev

Andreas Englund -- Christian Jaros

Craig Anderson

Marcus Hogberg

Scratched: Mikkel Boedker, Vladislav Namestnikov, Scott Sabourin

Injured: Anders Nilsson (concussion), Mark Borowiecki (high ankle sprain)


Status report

Lehkonen will play after being a healthy scratch against the Washington Capitals on Thursday. … Forward Bobby Ryan is practicing with the Senators after leaving to enter the NHL's player assistance program in November. Namestnikov will be a healthy scratch for the second game in a row. "We'll hold him out again," Smith said. The NHL Trade Deadline is Monday at 3 p.m. ET.


Stat pack

Suzuki has five points (two goals, three assists) in his past five games. … The Senators are 3-2-0 in their past five games after going 0-4-2 in their previous six.

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