Game Preview #6 - Les Vestes Bleues Sont Formidables!

The Jackets head to Montreal to continue their road trip.

Columbus Blue Jackets at Montreal Canadiens

October 17, 2013 - 7:30pm EDT
Bell Centre - Montreal, Quebec
Radio - WBNS 97.1 - TV - Fox Sports Ohio
Opponents Blog: Eyes On The Prize
SBN's Canadiens vs Blue Jackets Coverage

The Jackets are back in action tonight as their road trip continues. They get a hot Canadiens team coming back home. The Habs, after losing their opener, have rattled off four wins in five games, including a current three-game winning streak. They're scoring a ton (more than a goal per game more than our Jackets), and Carey Price has been nothing short of excellent thus far, with a .944 save % and a 1.81 goals-against in five games thus far. He shut out the Jets Tuesday night in Winnipeg.

Columbus is working through some offensive struggles. I think we all expected that scoring goals would be tough at times, but back to back games with just one goal each (on 27 and 37 shots, respectively) are magnifying the issue. Granted, some of that is the opposition, but they've been getting shots. It's a question of quality at times.

Despite saying there would be no lineup changes, from morning skate there do appear to be some line shifts up from. Nick Foligno remains out, and Artem Anisimov appears to be moving to the wing in his place. I think this is a good move, as Arty is struggling right now. Perhaps lessening that end-to-end game will free him up to get his offensive game untracked.

Sergei Bobrovsky will get the start again tonight, and it appears no changes will be made to the defense. This would mean Dalton Prout is out again.

Projected Lineups

Columbus Blue Jackets
(2-3-0, 4 Points; 4th division, 9th conference)

Cam Atkinson Brandon Dubinsky Marian Gaborik
Artem Anisimov Ryan Johansen R.J. Umberger
Boone Jenner Mark Letestu Blake Comeau
Ryan Craig Derek MacKenzie Jared Boll
Fedor Tyutin Jack Johnson
Ryan Murray James Wisniewski
Nikita Nikitin David Savard
Sergei Bobrovsky
Curtis McElhinney

Montreal Canadiens
(4-2-0, 8 Points; 3rd Division, 4th Conference)

Alex Galchenyuk Lars Eller Brendan Gallagher
Rene Bourque Tomas Plekanec Brian Gionta
Brandon Prust David Desharnais Danny Briere
Travis Moen Michael Bournival Ryan White
Andrei Markov P.K. Subban
Josh Gorges Raphael Diaz
Nathan Beaulieu Francis Bouillon
Carey Price
Peter Budaj

Season Series

10/17/13 - Columbus at Montreal
11/15/13 - Montreal at Columbus
03/20/14 - Columbus at Montreal

Head to Head Stats

Montreal Columbus
3.33 (9) GPG 2.20 (23)
1.67 (4) GAPG 2.40 (10)
26.9% (7) PP% 25.0% (9)
84.0% (9) PK% 85.7% (7)
Lars Eller, 5 G leader four tied, 2
P.K. Subban / Alex Galchenyuk, 7 A leader Marian Gaborik, 4
P.K. Subban, 8 Pts leader Marian Gaborik, 6
George Parros, 20 PIM leader Jared Boll, 12
1-1-0 Home/Road 2-1-0
10/15 @ Winnipeg, W 3-0 Last Game 10/15 @ Detroit, L 2-1
4-2-0 Last 10 2-3-0

Game Notes

Rather than a bulleted list, I'll just say this: this Jackets team isn't playing "badly" per se. They need to finish their chances. It won't be easy against a tough goalie who's playing well. They also need to continue to improve the sloppiness in their own zone. Montreal can punish them if they're bad in their own zone again. I feel like the Jackets *can* win this game, but they're going to have to play like they did in the first period against Detroit, and yet bury those chances. An 18-shot period with no goals just isn't going to cut it.

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