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HomeSportsHockeyNHL News: Red Wings ride momentum into matchup with Canadiens

NHL News: Red Wings ride momentum into matchup with Canadiens


As they await Patrick Kane’s anticipated debut, the Detroit Red Wings will set out to continue their recent run of success.

Meanwhile, the Montreal Canadiens must find a way to win games at home again.

Looking for a fifth victory in six games, the Red Wings can also hand the Canadiens a fifth consecutive home defeat on Saturday night.

Detroit closed November on an impressive 4-1-0 stretch, scoring 20 times in the process. The Red Wings posted four unanswered goals during Thursday’s 5-1 home rout of Chicago.

J.T. Compher and Robby Fabbri each had two goals, and Alex Lyon stopped 34 shots to help the club rebound from allowing two third-period goals during Wednesday’s 3-2 loss to the New York Rangers.

“Just got to give a lot of credit to the guys. They battled really hard and just got the job done,” said Lyon, who has stopped 87 of 89 shots while winning his past three starts. “Showing signs of a mature hockey team.”

The Red Wings’ maturity will expand once the 35-year-old Kane takes the ice, which, according to the team, could be at least one week away.

A three-time Stanley Cup champion with Chicago who has 1,237 career points, Kane is recovering from summer hip surgery and signed a free agent deal with Detroit this week.

“I think we’ll be cautious with it, and get a feel on how he is with everything … but, obviously, he’s eager,” Detroit coach Derek Lalonde said of Kane, who finished last season with the Rangers.

For now, the Red Wings have been able to lean on Compher, who has recorded four goals and nine assists in his past 11 games. Fabbri has five goals and two assists in his past five.

Compher scored during Detroit’s 3-2 overtime loss Nov. 9 against Montreal at home.

Two days later, the host Canadiens beat Boston 3-2, also in overtime, but since then they have dropped four consecutive home games, outscored 18-9 in those contests.

The Canadiens allowed four third-period goals en route to a 5-1 home loss to Florida on Thursday. It also didn’t help that Montreal went 0-for-6 on the power play against the Panthers; they’ve failed to convert on all 23 chances with the man-advantage over the past eight games.

“I wouldn’t say (the power play is) not clicking,” said Montreal star Nick Suzuki, who has one point in four games and no goals in the past nine, but did score against the Red Wings earlier this season.

“We had a good game plan (Thursday),” Suzuki added. “We gotta find one.”

Cayden Primeau (3.72 goals-against average) stopped 24 of 29 shots Thursday as Montreal coach Martin St. Louis continues to employ a three-goaltender approach. Primeau made 27 saves at Detroit last month.

Teammate Jake Allen went 0-5-0 with a 4.55 goals-against average in November. Sam Montembeault, who recently signed a three-year contract extension with Montreal worth $3.15 million per season, is 5-3-1 with a 2.73 goals-against average and .910 save percentage.

Johnathan Kovacevic scored Montreal’s lone goal on Thursday. He’s recorded all four of his goals this season in the past seven games.

–Field Level Media

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