This most recent road trip the Pittsburgh Penguins have been on has not been as successful as past trips this season. The Penguins have gone winless in their two games, including a 4-1 loss to the Carolina Hurricanes Thursday night, of the three-game trip, and it concludes Saturday night against former Penguins coach Michel Therrien and the Montreal Canadiens. The first-place Canadiens are coming off a 5-2 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs Wednesday night.
Season series: First meeting of the season.
Last meeting: The Penguins and Canadiens last met on February 7, 2012 in Montreal. That night Montreal came out on top, winning 3-2 thanks to a go-ahead goal from Tomas Plekanec in the eighth round of the shootout. Carey Price sealed the game for the Canadiens by stopping a Jason Williams attempt. Throughout regulation, both team traded goals with Louis Leblanc and Lars Eller coming through for Montreal, and Pascal Dupuis and James Neal lighting the lamp for Pittsburgh. Price stopped thirty-two Penguins shots to earn the victory.
1. Power play: Both the Penguins and Canadiens come into Saturday’s matchup with producing power plays. Pittsburgh ranks fourth in the league, while Montreal sits eleventh. Andrei Markov leads Montreal with twelve points on the man-advantage, while Evgeni Malkin leads the Penguins with fourteen. The addition of Michael Ryder from the Dallas Stars can only help improve the Canadiens’ power play.
2. Michel Therrien: Saturday night will mark the first time that the Penguins have met up with their former coach and predecessor to Dan Bylsma. Therrien took over the Penguins during the 2005-2006 season and led them to the Stanley Cup Finals in 2008. Therrien is no stranger to the Penguins and could have the upper hand throughout the contest.
Penguins: C Evgeni Malkin (concussion), D Paul Martin (lower body)
Canadiens: RW Rene Bourque (concussion), D Raphael Diaz (concussion), C Petteri Nokelainen (lower body)
Former Penguin alert: HC Michel Therrien, RW Colby Armstrong, GM Marc Bergevin
Penguins (via penguins.nhl.com)
14 Chris Kunitz (A)-87 Sidney Crosby (C)-9 Pascal Dupuis
24 Matt Cooke-16 Brandon Sutter-18 James Neal
19 Beau Bennett-15 Dustin Jeffrey-48 Tyler Kennedy
10 Tanner Glass-46 Joe Vitale-27 Craig Adams
2 Matt Niskanen-4 Mark Eaton
44 Brooks Orpik (A)-58 Kris Letang
41 Robert Bortuzzo/47 Simon Despres-5 Deryk Engelland
92 Tomas Vokoun
Canadiens (via John Lu/@JohnLuTSNMtl)
67 Max Pacioretty-51 David Desharnais-11 Brendan Gallagher
8 Brandon Prust-14 Tomas Plekanec-21 Brian Gionta (C)
27 Alex Galchenyuk-81 Lars Eller-73 Michael Ryder
32 Travis Moen-53 Ryan White-20 Colby Armstrong
79 Andrei Markov (A)-74 Alexei Emelin
22 Tomas Kaberle-76 P.K. Subban
26 Josh Gorges (A)-55 Francis Bouillon
31 Carey Price