Saturday, May 10, 2014

Playoff Preview: Canadiens at Bruins (Round 2, Game 5)

Match Up:

The Canadiens return to Boston for Game 5 against the Bruins Saturday night with the series tied 2-2. The game is set to start at 7:00 and airs on CBC and RDS.

Carey Price and Tuukka Rask both played 60 minutes of shutout hockey Thursday night in Game 4, sending the match to overtime tied 0-0. Rookie Matt Fraser, playing in his first NHL playoff game, broke the deadlock less than 2 minutes into the first overtime to even up the series.

What to Watch:

Max Pacioretty has been held to just 1 goal and 3 points in these playoffs, with 1 assist in 4 games so far versus the Bruins. Linemate David Desharnais has the same stats heading after 8 playoff games, numbers the top line forwards can't be happy with. Rene Bourque has also struggled recently, he's minus 5 with no points in his last 3 games after starting these playoffs with 4 goals and an assist in his first 5 games.

As effective as the Bruins have been in shutting down Montreal's big threats, the Canadiens have been equally solid against Boston's top line. Milan Lucic has an empty net goal and a pair of assists against the Habs so far, Jarome Iginla has been held to just 1 goal and David Krejci has 1 assist so far in this series.

What's at Stake:

With the series tied 2 games apiece, the winner of Game 5 will push their opponent to the brink of elimination with a chance to close out the series Monday night in Montreal. The Canadiens have not yet trailed a series in these playoffs, winning 4 straight against the Lightning and taking the first and third games in Round 2.

Who's Out:

For the Habs, Alex Galchenyuk (knee) is still not ready to return, although he has started skating again.

The Bruins are still without Dennis Seidenberg (lower body), Chris Kelly (back) and Adam McQuaid (ankle).

What Else:

Thursday's game was the 18th of these playoffs that needed overtime to find a winner out of the 64 played as of Friday's action. The Habs and Bruins have gone to overtime 3 times each, twice in Round 2. The Blackhawks and Blues went to overtime 4 times in Round 1, as did the Wild and Avalanche. The Rangers have seen the least OTs of the remaining teams, going to the extra frame just once in 12 games so far.

The Question Mark:

What can Michel Therrien do to help spark Pacioretty an Desharnais in Game 5?

Let us know what you think, leave a comment or send us a tweet using the #MTLHockey hashtag on Twitter.

The Montreal Hockey Talk Pregame Show starts an hour before puck drop, join the live conversation by using the #MTLHockey hashtag on Twitter. And don’t miss the Post Game Show starting 5 minutes after the final siren.


Get him away from Douglas Murray. They are on together far too often.

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