Preview: Ducks vs Canadiens

Photo: Eric Bolte, USA Today

Photo: Eric Bolte, USA Today

By Michael Walters

The Anaheim Ducks(17-11-5) face the Montreal Canadiens(20-7-4). This will be the second and final meeting of the season between these two teams. The Ducks won the first contest 2-1 back in Anaheim.

Anaheim Outlook:

The Ducks edged the Toronto Maple Leafs 3-2 last night. Ryan Getzlaf, Nick Ritchie, and Cam Fowler each scored. Getzlaf’s goal was his first against Toronto in his career giving him a goal against every team in the NHL(except Anaheim of course). Fowler recorded his 200th point as a Duck, which tied Matt Cullen for 9th on Anaheim’s all-time scoring list. The Ducks are tied for first place in the Pacific Division in terms of points at 39. Rickard Rakell is the scoring leader with 14 goals. Ryan Kesler has scored 12 goals. Cam Fowler has 9 goals. Andrew CoglianoNick Ritchie, and Jakob Silfverberg each have eight goals.

Keys To The Game

Having played last night, the Ducks will look to score early in this game. This could be a low scoring game as Montreal only gives up 2.19 goals per game, which is 5th best in the NHL. Anaheim has the second best power play in the league at 25.0% and will try to work the forecheck to draw penalties against the Canadiens. Montreal is only 80.7% efficient in killing off penalties which ranks 19th in the league. The Ducks need to get traffic in front of Carey Price to help create scoring chances.

Anaheim’s Projected Lineup

Offense
Rickard RakellRyan GetzlafCorey Perry
Andrew CoglianoRyan KeslerJakob Silfverberg
Nick Ritchie – Antoine VermetteOndrej Kase
Joseph Cramarossa – Logan Shaw – Jared Boll

Defense
Cam FowlerSami Vatanen
Hampus Lindholm – Josh Manson
Shea Theodore – Kevin Bieksa

In Net
Jonathan Bernier (Unconfirmed)

Montreal Outlook

The Canadiens are coming off a 2-1 victory over the Washington Capitals last Saturday. They are 5-3-2 in their last 10 games and are first place in the Atlantic Division with a record of 20-7-4. Max Pacioretty leads the team with 12 goals. Paul Byron has 10, Alex Galchenyuk has nine, and Shea Weber has scored eight. Carey Price continues to be solid with 17 wins already, 1.90 goals against average, and .936 save percentage.

Keys To The Game

Montreal has had a few days of rest to prepare for this game, so they should look to get a step on Anaheim early in this contest. The Canadiens usually play in tight contests, but they do have the ability to pull out teams as well. They blew out Colorado 10-1 a little over a week ago and they also dropped five goals on Los Angeles and New Jersey. If Montreal can get a goal early in this one, then they have a good chance of earning two points. Their penalty kill is suspect, so they need to stay out of the sin-bin against Anaheim’s second best power play.

Montreal’s Projected Lineup(Dailyfaceoff.com)

Offense
Max Pacioretty – Tomas Plekanec – Alexander Radulov
Artturi Lehkonen – Phillip Danault – Andrew Shaw
Paul Byron – Torrey Mitchell – Brendan Gallagher
Daniel Carr – Brian Flynn – Michael McCarron

Defense
Alexei EmelinShea Weber
Mark Barberio – Jeff Petry
Nathan Beaulieu – Zach Redmond

In Net
Carey Price (Confirmed)

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December 20, 2016

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