|MTL||0||2||0||(0 - 0)||2|
|OTT||0||0||1||(0 - 0)||1|
The Montreal Canadiens are feeling good following back-to-back wins over the defending Stanley Cup champions.
The Ottawa Senators are hoping to regroup after their longest winning streak in more than a year was snapped in Boston their last time out.
Seeking a fourth consecutive victory, the visiting Canadiens try for a fifth win in seven games over the Senators on Friday night.
With one victory in its first eight games, Montreal (4-5-2) found itself in the midst of its worst start in 70 years. The Canadiens, however, seem to have turned things around with three straight wins - including a home-and-home sweep of the Bruins.
Carey Price has been instrumental in the resurgence. After making 29 saves in last Thursday's 2-1 win at Boston, Price stopped 26 shots in Saturday's 4-2 victory.
"I think our guys are pretty confident again," Price said. "I think that's all it took was just a couple of wins. Now the guys are all excited to go to the rink again. When you're losing, it's not fun. Everything's gloom and doom so winning solves everything."
Ottawa (7-6-0) couldn't produce the same kind of results against Boston, failing to extend its six-game winning streak with a 5-3 loss Tuesday.
Left wing Nick Foligno recorded a career-best three points, but after defenseman Jared Cowen tied the game at 3-all with 14:56 remaining, Craig Anderson surrendered two goals in a 37-second stretch just over two minutes later.
Anderson turned away 36 of 41 shots, allowing at least five goals for the third time this season.
"Cat's got nine lives," Anderson said. "We used up a few of those in the previous couple games but we're learning still, we just gotta learn how to play - we get the point. When you're not feeling great and get the game (tied) 3-3, you gotta find a way to shut the other team down and just get a point."
Despite the loss, coach Paul MacLean remains confident in Ottawa's ability to get back on track.
"Our team (had) been at a real good level for six games, and we took a little dip. Now it's incumbent on us to get ready to play Friday night and get ourselves back to that level, or beyond," MacLean said.
The Senators, who have won four straight at home while converting 5 of 12 power-play opportunities, could have difficulty continuing that success against Montreal. The Canadiens have killed all but one of their opponents' 12 chances with the man advantage over the last three games.
"That's something that we take pride in," Montreal defenseman P.K. Subban said. "Special teams is the difference in every hockey game. We have a lot of guys that are dedicated to blocking shots and being in the lanes and getting the pucks out.
"When it comes down to it - that's what wins championships."
Price, who has a 1.33 goals-against average while starting each game during the three-game win streak, is 4-0-0 with a 1.57 GAA and two shutouts over his last five appearances in Ottawa.
Price likely won't need to worry about facing Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson, who has missed the last two contests after sustaining a concussion Saturday.
Center Jason Spezza, who ranks first on the Senators with 15 points, has 15 goals and 16 assists in 20 home meetings with Montreal - leading the Senators to 13 wins.
Anderson went 3-0-0 with a 1.99 GAA against Montreal over the previous two seasons.
The Canadiens are 4-1-1 in the last six meetings after going 1-6-1 in the previous eight.
|Mar 23 '12||OTT 1 at MTL 5||E. Cole|
|Mar 16 '12||MTL 1 at OTT 2 - OT||F. Kuba|
|Mar 14 '12||OTT 2 at MTL 3 - SO||D. Desharnais|
|Jan 14 '12||OTT 3 at MTL 2 - SO||D. Alfredsson|
|Dec 27 '11||MTL 6 at OTT 2||M. Cammalleri|
|Nov 04 '11||MTL 2 at OTT 1||A. Kostitsyn|
|S. Da Costa||14||3||1||4||-5||4||0||0|