Game 1 preview: MTL vs. NYR

Saturday, 17.05.2014 / 12:00 AM canadiens.com

Eastern Conference Finals: Game 1

Canadiens vs. Rangers

On Saturday afternoon, two battle-hardened teams will go head-to-head at the Bell Centre.

The New York Rangers faced elimination, down three games to one against the Pittsburgh Penguins, but stormed back to win the series in seven on Tuesday. Henrik Lundqvist was nearly perfect in Game 7, making 35 saves on 36 shots. Brian Boyle opened the scoring for the Rangers and Brad Richards netted the eventual winner on the powerplay midway through the game.

Wednesday night, the Habs completed a comeback of their own by dismissing the Boston Bruins in a winner-takes-all seventh game at the TD Garden. Daniel Briere set up Dale Weise to open the score for the Canadiens and added a late insurance marker to pace his team to a 3-1 win. Max Pacioretty scored the game-winner on a perfect David Desharnais feed. Carey Price stopped 29 of 30 shots to notch his eighth playoff win this spring.

Though the Rangers struggled to start the 2013-14 season, the team has been playing some of its best hockey of late. The New Yorkers have shown good depth so far in this postseason. Their best line against Pittsburgh was the de facto third unit of Benoit Pouliot, Derrick Brassard and Mats Zuccarello. Further up in their depth chart are proven performers such as Martin St-Louis, Brad Richards and Rick Nash, and young guns Chris Kreider, Derek Stepan and Carl Hagelin. Going forward, the one to watch will be Nash, who went scoreless in seven games against the Pens despite racking up a team-high 22 shots on net.

Exceptionally, puck drop will be at 1:00PM E.S.T.

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