Canadiens' motto: in Price we trust
Canada's top hockey team, the Canadiens (23-11-2), is enjoying a bountiful road trip so far with wins over the Islanders and the Hurricanes in the first two outings. Stop three of the five-game journey is in southern Florida where they'll meet the Panthers who are unbeaten at home in their last four games.
Montreal scored an empty net goal by Max Pacioretty in its 3-1 triumph over Carolina, but it was a beautiful effort by Jiri Sekac that broke open a scoreless game in the middle period and got things started.
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Carey Price wasn't super busy, facing 19 shots but was only beaten by a power play score in the third period that halved the Canadiens' lead. Price has all six of the Canadiens' wins in their last 10 starts, allowing only nine goals while compiling a 6-1-0 record.
The Panthers (16-9-8) have won two in a row and four of five but goaltender Roberto Luongo hasn't had much luck when facing the Canadiens. Luongo sports a 1-6-0 mark in his last seven encounters with the Habs.
Fresh faces joining Oilers
On Monday the Oilers (7-22-7) acquired two players they hope can step right into their line-up and provide some sort of spark.
With only one win in 21 starts, and in the midst of a nine-game losing streak, the Oilers have to do something as they host the Los Angeles Kings.
Winger Mark Fraser was claimed off waivers from the Boston Bruins and centre Derek Roy came over from the Nashville Predators in exchange for Mark Arcobello.
The Oilers have yet to win under interim coach Todd Nelson (0-3-2) dropping their latest outing Saturday, 4-1 to Calgary.
The Kings (18-12-7) opened a three-game Canadian swing with a 2-1 loss in Calgary Monday. The Flames scored a pair of first-period goals against James Quick and the Kings' offence couldn't get untracked. Tyler Toffoli finally got them on the board in the final minute of play in the second period. But that was all they could muster.
Canucks face stern test vs. Sharks
That 11-6-2 road record of the Canucks (20-11-3 overall) is deceiving because in their last four away games they have but two points (0-2-2).
Ryan Miller may be part of the solution to turning things on the road, especially against San Jose because the netminder has won his last half dozen starts vs. the Sharks.
San Jose (19-12-5) has other thoughts in mind as they shoot to complete a perfect December at home. They are 7-0-0 for the month and have won eight in a row overall on home ice. The club record is nine.
The Sharks dropped their last two road starts, including 3-1 Saturday in Los Angeles against the Kings.