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Red Wings-Canadiens Game Day Updates, Keys to the Game

NHL: Montreal Canadiens at Detroit Red Wings Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

Game Day Updates

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Keys to the Game

1. Shut Down the Top 6

Tatar/Danault/Lehkonen/Domi/Suzuki have combined to score 40% of the teams goals this year. Assuming Kovalchuk stays in the Top 6 after making his Montreal debut last night, that’s not a terrible first couple of lines for Montreal. With Armia and Gallagher out and having combined for 27 G this year, those top two lines are going to be leaned on heavily by the Canadiens. It’s not like they are this ultra loaded, superstar heavy top lines, but they are made up of just solid players. The Red Wings need to keep them quiet, and I truthfully think they can.


2. Wake Up Bertuzzi and Fabbri

The former Guelph teammates have combined for just 3 G, 1 A in their last 6 games while also posting a -4 rating. With Dylan Larkin playing better his last five, it makes sense pairing these three up. With Athanasiou essentially falling off a cliff this year and Mantha still out, these two need to be the ones that can provide some kind of consistent offense, even if it’s just a point a game between them. Look for Larkin and these two to pick things up tonight if they want to beat the Habs.


3. Pucks on Net

A yes one of the older cliches in hockey, but it is so true here. The Canadiens have allowed the 11th most goals in the NHL this season, but they are 11th best in the NHL in shots allowed this year. Meaning what? That the goaltending is subpar. Carey Price has struggled, and if the Red Wings don’t see him because he played vs. Winnipeg last night, you’ll see Charlie Lindgren who has played in just two NHL games the last two seasons total. Goaltending is the main reason why the Canadiens are slumping, and the Red Wings have a golden opportunity to here to jumpstart the offense, but it starts with just getting pucks on net.