Puck drop is at 7:30pm EST (RDS, TSN 690AM)
The artist formerly known as "L'artiste" is back at the Bell Centre tonight. This is not the first time Alex Kovalev returns to Montreal, however this time it feels different. Kovalev has not played at the Bell Centre since December 7th 2010. After disappointing stints in Ottawa, Pittsburgh and the KHL, The Enigma put up 3 points on Saturday night in his Panthers debut.
This will be the third game in 4 nights for the Panthers who are looking to rebound after a beating in Ottawa last night. Former Hab Jose Theodore is expected to get the night off, while Scott Clemmensen gets the nod between the pipes.
The Canadiens meanwhile are looking to avenge a 2-1 home-ice loss to Toronto on Saturday. The Habs have not started a season off with two losses since 2000-2001. Brian Gionta scored the Only goal for Montreal on Saturday.
With Brendan Gallagher making his NHL debut and Alex Galchenyuck moving over to Centre tonight, Lars Eller is the odd man out. According to head Coach Michel Therrien, Eller needs to up the intensity in his game. While that may be true, seems to me more like giving Galchenyuck a chance to show everything he's got before sending him back to Sarnia.
The two Goalies playing tonight's game couldn't have more differing records. Scott Clemmensen has never lost against Montreal (6-0-0, 1.68 GAA) while Carey Price has never beaten the Panthers at home (0-2-1, 2.62 GAA).
Michael Blunden and Yanick Weber remain healthy scratches for Montreal, while Petteri Nokelainen continues to rehab a back injury.