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New-look Penguins set to host Canadiens

by Joey Olszewski

CANADIENS (20-6-5) at PENGUINS (25-8-0)


Last 10: Montreal 7-2-1; Pittsburgh 10-0-0

Season series: This will be the second of three meetings. The first match was a wild 7-6 overtime win for the Pens, which turned out to be the start of their current 12-game win streak.

Big story: Brenden Morrow is expected to make his debut with the Penguins on Tuesday night, when they look to extend their win streak and lead atop the Eastern Conference.

Team Scope:

Canadiens: Montreal coach Michel Therrien will be behind the bench in Pittsburgh for the first time since he was relieved of his duties in February of 2009. Therrien’s Canadiens are nipping at the heels of the Pens for first place in the Eastern Conference. Montreal is five points back, but has two games at hand.

The Habs are coming off a tough 2-1 loss to the Buffalo Sabres on Saturday night, but that won’t distract them from the task at hand.

“They have a lot of world class players so obviously we have to do make sure we’re doing the right things,” defenseman P.K Subban said. “Putting pucks in the right places and making sure we’re coming back to the house hard and helping out our goaltender.”

Montreal goalie Carey Price will surely appreciate the extra help around the net against the League’s highest-scoring team. In his last four starts against the Penguins, Price is 1-1-2 with a 3.90 goals-against average.

Penguins: The longest winning streak this season and first place in the East wasn’t enough for Pens general manager Ray Shero, who added some grit to the lineup. Likely making their debuts Tuesday night, Douglas Murray and Morrow add even more depth to this outstanding Pittsburgh team.

It should be interesting to see what Pens coach Dan Bylsma does with the lineup card against the Habs. With Evgeni Malkin close to being back, most are expecting him to center a line with James Neal and Morrow.

Morrow’s leadership and skills on Malkin’s line would be the perfect compliment to Sidney Crosby’s line, giving the Pens a lethal one-two punch.

Who’s hot: Penguins goalie Marc-Andre Fleury, who leads all goalies in wins, has put up a 0.74 GAA in his last four starts.

Injury report: Kris Letang and Malkin will be game-time decisions for the Penguins. The Habs will be without Rene Bourque and Raphael Diaz, both recovering from concussions, and Brandon Prust is still out with a shoulder injury.

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