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Lightning at Canadiens Preview: Mental Reset

Mar 21, 2023; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman (77) and Montreal Canadiens forward Josh Anderson (17) battle for the puck during the second period at the Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports

Game #13
Time: 7:00 PM EST
Location: Bell Centre, Montreal
Broadcast/Streaming: BSSUN, ESPN+, TSN2, RDS
Opponent’s Site: Habs Eyes on the Prize


Okay, so last night didn’t go so well. The Lightning jumped out to an early 4-1 after one period, but let the Leafs claw themselves all the way back to win it in overtime. The Lightning were fortunate to get a late goal from Brandon Hagel to earn an extra point so the two blue and white teams are now tied for third in the Atlantic Division through the early part of the season.

Driving up to Montreal, the Lightning frankly have a much easier opponent than on Monday. Montreal is a bad team and they will fall to the bottom of the East in the not-too-distant future. They don’t have Auston Matthews, they likely won’t have the “notch” in play the Lightning showed in the first period and didn’t have in the latter half of the last game.

Montreal are about 47% at 5v5 in all the shot metrics, but in the early goings these numbers don’t mean much. Case in point, they’re higher than the Lightning in some cases. They also have 95% save percentage at 5v5 from their goalies Jake Allen and Sam Montembeault. No offense do those guys, but 95% seems pretty unsustainable.

But once you take special teams into account, the Habs get quite close to the San Jose Sharks, while the Lightning are the best on the PK by a mile.

The Habs haven’t played since Saturday when they visited St. Louis. Since then, they’ve had a day off and a practice. Meanwhile for the Lightning, they played the night before and had to travel up the St Lawrence River to get to this game. For that reason the Lightning are coming in at a disadvantage.

The Habs recently put Juraj Slavkovsky, their most recent top pick, on the top line with Suzuki and Caufield. They were the only line to do positively in the 6-3 loss to the Blues. We’ll see how they do in their second game together tonight against the Lightning.

Stars Match-up

Game #13Tampa Bay LightningMontreal Canadiens
Overall Record5-3-45-4-2
Home Record4-0-24-2-0
Road Record1-3-21-2-2
Goals For4533
Goals Against4239
Power Play30.6%20.5%
Penalty Kill86.7%75%
Stats via ESPN and Natural Stat Trick

Tampa Bay Lightning Projected Lines

Brandon Hagel – Brayden Point – Nikita Kucherov
Alex Barré-Boulet – Anthony Cirelli – Mikey Eyssimont
Steven Stamkos – Nick Paul – Conor Sheary
Tanner Jeannot – Luke Glendening – Tyler Motte

Victor Hedman – Erik Cernak
Mikhail Sergachev – Darren Raddysh
Calvin de Haan – Nick Perbix

Jonas Johansson
Matt Tomkins – projected starter

From last night in Toronto.

Montreal Canadiens Projected Lines


Cole Caufield – Nick Suzuki – Juraj Slafkovsky
Tanner Pearson – Sean Monahan – Brendan Gallagher
Alex Newhook – Christian Dvorak – Josh Anderson
Michael Pezzetta – Jake Evans – Joel Armia


Mike Matheson – Jonathan Kovacevic
Brendan Guhle – Justin Barron
Arber Xhekaj – Jordan Harris

Jake Allen – projected starter
Samuel Montembeault

From Saturday against STL.

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