Lightning (1-0-0) at Canadiens (1-1-0)
Season Series: The Bolts and Habs meet for the first of four meetings this season, as tonight also marks the first of two matchups that will take place at the Bell Centre. Tonight’s game also signals the first time in franchise history that Tampa Bay will play a road opener in Montreal.
|Mar 9, 2010||TBL@MTL||MTL, 5 - 3|
|Jan 27, 2010||MTL@TBL||TBL, 3 - 0|
|Dec 30, 2009||MTL@TBL||MTL, 2 - 1|
|Nov 7, 2009||TBL@MTL||TBL, 3 - 1|
The Big Story: Tampa Bay comes into tonight as winners in its last four straight games, dating back to last season, and has not lost since Apr. 6 vs. Carolina. Tampa Bay has gained points in eight of its last nine contests against the Canadiens and has also gained points in three of its last four games played in Montreal, posting a 2-1-1 record. Though the teams have split their last eight meetings, Tampa Bay has lost once in regulation during that span with a 5-3 defeat at Montreal on Mar. 9, 2010. Dominic Moore will face his former team tonight and head coach Guy Boucher will face the Habs for the first time after coaching Montreal's top AHL affiliate, the Hamilton Bulldogs, and leading them to 52 wins last season.
LIGHTNING – Tampa Bay plays opens the first road trip of the season tonight in Montreal. Tonight’s game is also the first of three contests on the trip as well as the front half of the team’s first back-to-back set this season. The Lightning held practice at the St. Pete Times Forum earlier this week after getting a day off on Sunday following the club’s season-opening 5-3 victory at home against the Thrashers on Saturday night. Following tonight’s game at the Bell Centre, the team will travel to Philadelphia to take on the Flyers tomorrow night.
CANADIENS – Montreal will play its third game of the season tonight and the first in its home arena. In two games so far this season, each on the road, the Habs have split wins with a season-opening loss at Toronto followed by a victory against Pittsburgh at the new Consol Energy Center. This is the Habs’ first game since Saturday’s 3-2 win over the Penguins, a game in which they received two goals from Mike Cammalleri as well as one from Scott Gomez. Carey Price also made 36 saves on 38 shots for Montreal.
Who’s Hot: Steven Stamkos had three points, including two goals, in Saturday’s 5-3 win over Atlanta and Vincent Lecavalier comes into tonight’s game with four goals and eight assists in his last 10 contests versus Montreal. The Canadiens’ Jeff Halpern and Benoit Pouliot each come in with two points in as many games.
Injury Report: LIGHTNING – Mattias Ohlund (knee, out 2 weeks); CANADIENS – Roman Hamrlik (knee) and Andrei Markov (knee).
Quotable: “I strongly believe that if you're full-out out there for 30, 35 seconds, you're dead (tired). So, if you're having one-minute shifts and 45-second shifts, it's because you are not (playing) full out. We want guys to have energy to be relentless. If you're relentless, rarely is a forward going to play more than 20 minutes.” – Head Coach Guy Boucher, explaining his philosophy and preference for players to take shorter shifts
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