The Islanders, one of the the snooze-inducing teams in the New York area, are playing very boring but effective hockey. Rick DiPietro has been a force in goal and he continues to be one of the best puck-handlers at his position. He's 4-5 with a 2.34 GAA in his career against the Canadiens.
Josef Vasicek is leading them with 8 goals, Mike Comrie is tops with 17 points. Ted Nolan is a hell of a coach, and has been getting a good effort from his team all year long. He knows how to maximize his players potential.
The Habs have had difficulty picking up wins at Nassau Coliseum since 1998. In 17 games since Jan. 8 of that year, they're 4-12 with one tie.
Cristobal Huet looks to bounce back tonight after losing three games in a row. He's been jittery at times and has not received the support he needs from his teammates in the defensive zone over that span.
Count me among those who would rather see Carey Price in net. The Canadiens just seem to absorb the poise and confidence he plays with. When he's out there, the entire team seems more relaxed.
Price is 5-1-1. (5-2)
Huet is 6-5-2. (6-7)
It's starting to become more and more clear that it's not a question of if Price steals the starting job, but rather when. The numbers that really matter are wins and losses. Price's stats are skewed by having given up meaningless goals when games were already out of reach. He has also given up some soft goals. This happens to the best goaltenders, but some of the goals do leave you scratching your head.
It seems pretty clear that Price gives the Habs a better chance to win, and he's a workhorse, having proved that point by playing in over 82 games at various levels over the course of last season.