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Devils at Canadiens preview

Montreal seeks to end five-game winless streak; Blackwood in goal for New Jersey

by Sean Farrell / Independent Correspondent

DEVILS (8-11-4) at CANADIENS (11-8-5)

7:30 p.m. ET; NHLN, SN, RDS, MSG+, NHL.TV


The Game

The Montreal Canadiens will look for their first win in six games when they host the New Jersey Devils at Bell Centre on Thursday.

Montreal lost 8-1 at home to the Boston Bruins on Tuesday and has been outscored 14-2 since taking a 4-0 lead in a 6-5 loss to the New York Rangers on Saturday.

The Canadiens are 0-3-2 in the past five games, their longest winless streak of the season, after going 4-0-1 in their previous five.

Mackenzie Blackwood will start for New Jersey, which is 1-3-0 in its past four games after going 3-1-0 in their previous four.

Players to watch

Devils forward Taylor Hall has four points (two goals, two assists) during a three-game point streak.

Canadiens goalie Carey Price has allowed at least five goals in three of his past four games. He was pulled Tuesday for the first time in 113 starts.


They said it

"You have to be ready to play that type of game-winning hockey every night, and we're still learning that. But for us, when we do realize how to do that consistently, I expect a (heck) of a push out of this team." -- Devils defenseman P.K. Subban

"These points right now are just as important as the points in February and March, and we've got to treat it like it's a must-win game. We haven't won in five games now, so we've got to put a stop to this thing and let's do it tonight." -- Canadiens forward Nick Cousins


Devils projected lineup

Taylor Hall -- Nico Hischier -- Kyle Palmieri

Jesper Boqvist -- Jack Hughes -- Wayne Simmonds

Blake Coleman -- Travis Zajac -- Nikita Gusev

Miles Wood -- Pavel Zacha -- Jesper Bratt

Andy Greene -- Damon Severson

Sami Vatanen -- P.K. Subban

Will Butcher -- Matt Tennyson

Mackenzie Blackwood

Louis Domingue

Scratched: Mirco Mueller, Brett Seney, John Hayden

Injured: Connor Carrick (finger), Kevin Rooney (upper body)


Canadiens projected lineup

Tomas Tatar -- Phillip Danault -- Brendan Gallagher

Artturi Lehkonen -- Max Domi -- Nick Suzuki

Nick Cousins -- Jesperi Kotkaniemi -- Joel Armia

Charles Hudon -- Nate Thompson -- Jordan Weal

Ben Chiarot -- Shea Weber

Victor Mete -- Jeff Petry

Mike Reilly -- Cale Fleury

Carey Price

Keith Kinkaid

Scratched: Christian Folin, Brett Kulak

Injured: Jonathan Drouin (wrist), Paul Byron (knee)


Status report

Bratt and Zacha will return after each was a healthy scratch for the past two games. … The Canadiens will dress the same 20 players for the third straight game, though Cousins and Hudon will switch lines.


Stat pack

Palmieri has three points (two goals, one assist) during a three-game point streak. … Domi and Lehkonen each has three points (two goals, one assist) in the past two games. … Price needs one shutout to tie Ken Dryden (46) for third place on Montreal's all-time list. He is two wins from tying Nikolai Khabibulin and Gump Worsley (333) for 24th place on the NHL all-time list.

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