Predators-Canadiens Preview

BY foxsports • February 21, 2016

While they've often struggled this season with star goaltender Carey Price out, the Montreal Canadiens have managed to put together a nice win streak on home ice.

They'll try to match their longest run at the Bell Centre in 2015-16 on Monday night while denying the Nashville Predators' attempt at a franchise record.

Montreal (28-27-4) remains well out of playoff position in the Eastern Conference with Price, the reigning MVP and Vezina Trophy winner, reportedly out for the season because of a lower-body injury. The Canadiens, though, have won four in a row at home and used a 3-2 shootout victory against visiting Philadelphia on Friday to end a three-game overall skid.

"I think you can build off a win. We've had some success in this building, and we always look forward to playing here," defenseman P.K. Subban said.

Max Pacioretty had the tying power-play goal in the third period and scored in the shootout. Subban registered a pair of assists after coach Michel Therrien blamed him for a 3-2 loss in Colorado on Wednesday.

"Our fans have always been here for us, but as for critics and people who want to pick apart what goes on in this dressing room, I expect to hear that,'' Subban said. ''I've been here long enough to know that the best thing to do is go out and perform and produce and that's the best way to shut people up.

"There are a lot of people that are going to shut up after today."

Montreal, which hasn't won five straight at home since its 5-0-0 start, now faces a Nashville team seeking its first single-season eight-game point streak on the road. The Predators (27-21-11) have also earned a point in five straight overall contests to help them hang on to the West's last wild-card spot, going 2-0-3.

All three of those defeats have come in overtime, where Nashville is 1-10 this season.

"The points are important," coach Peter Laviolette said after Saturday's 2-1 home defeat to Los Angeles. "It's disappointing coming off a loss so anytime you leave an overtime loss or a shootout loss, it's difficult to be excited about the point. But we've got to keep collecting them. The guys played hard tonight and came out on the wrong side."

Laviolette's team had a much different result against Montreal on Dec. 21, winning 5-1. Shea Weber and Colin Wilson each had three points but haven't been too productive lately.

Weber has one goal in the Predators' last six games and Wilson has gone pointless over that same stretch.

Nashville has earned at least one point in each of its last eight meetings with the Canadiens (5-0-3) and is 2-0-1 in its last three trips to Montreal. Pekka Rinne, who has stopped 57 of 59 shots in his last two starts after posting a 4.00 goals-against average in his previous four, is 5-0-1 with a 0.99 GAA in his last six starts in the series.

Mike Ribeiro has a goal and eight assists in his past six games against his hometown team. The 16-year veteran has eight assists in his last eight contests overall.