Game 69 (Nice)
Date: Friday, March 8th
Time: 7:00 PT / 10:00 ET
Location: Honda Center, Anaheim CA
TV: FSW, ESPN+
Your Enemy: Eyes On The Prize
After a last-minute pro-tank move against the St. Louis Blues on Wednesday, the Anaheim Ducks welcome the Montreal Canadiens to Honda Center for their only visit of the year.
The Canadiens have surprised everyone by currently sitting in the East’s second Wild Card spot, battling the Hurricanes and Blue Jackets for the last two playoff spots with a month to play in the regular season.
With Antti Niemi facing the San Jose Sharks last night, Carey Price will be the starter tonight in Anaheim. If he picks up the win, he will become the winningest goaltender in Canadiens history, passing Jacques Plante for the record.
The Ducks, meanwhile, head into this nice game fifth from the bottom of the league, just two points ahead of the LA Kings with only 13 games remaining in the regular season.
The Ducks will look for their rookies, especially Troy Terry, to continue showing off their skill in their extended auditions for next season’s lineup.
Bob Murray hasn’t communicated a solid goaltending plan for the rest of the season with both John Gibson and Ryan Miller healthy. However, don’t be surprised to see Miller get tonight’s start, as the Ducks may opt to evenly split the remaining games on the schedule to specifically manage Gibson’s workload.
Keys to the Game
Good history against Price
Anaheim has been one of the few teams with good success against the former Hart Trophy winner. Price has a 3-6 record with a .912 SV% and 2.64 GAA against the Ducks in his career. We’ll see if this lowly Ducks team can sustain that success.
Shut down the top six
The Canadiens have one of the better top sixes in the NHL led by 30 goal-scorer Brendan Gallagher and 60 point Max Domi. Combined with Shea Weber’s cannon of a shot on the power play, the Ducks will need to find a way to neutralize the threats these players pose to their porous defense.