Game 4: Press notes for Canadiens vs. Hurricanes

Press notes distributed for tonight’s Canadiens’ 2007-08 home opener vs. the Carolina Hurricanes:

HOME OPENER

After three consecutive road games (Carolina, Toronto and Pittsburgh), the Canadiens open their 11th complete season at the Bell Centre, hosting the Carolina Hurricanes.

Seven of the last 10 Canadiens’ season openers were played on the road. The 2007-08 season marks the seventh consecutive time the Canadiens played away from Montreal to start the season. The last season opener to be held in Montreal was on October 2, 1999 as the Canadiens lost 4-1 to the Toronto Maple Leafs at the Bell Centre. The Canadiens boast a 34-13-10 record in 57 home openers in the NHL.

CLOSING IN ON 100

The Canadiens began the 99th season of their history and a 91st in the NHL. Since 1917-18, the Canadiens have played 5,711 games, winning 2,934, losing 1,899, along with 837 ties and 42 overtime losses.

LIFETIME SERIES:

Canadiens vs. Carolina

The Canadiens play against the Hurricanes for a second time this season, after winning their season opener, October 3 in Carolina. Three of the four meetings scheduled between the two teams this season will be played in October. It is the 163rd regular-season matchup between the Canadiens and Carolina, with Montreal holding a 88-51-20-3 edge.

03/10/07 @ Carolina V 3-2 OT
13/10/07 Montréal 19h
26/10/07 @ Carolina 19h
08/12/07 Montréal 19h

Recent Canadiens Games:

Last 5 MTL Games: 2 – 0 – 1 Last 10 MTL Games: 2 – 0 – 1

3-2 W Oct. 10 @ Pittsburgh Penguins

Andrei Markov’s second goal the year, netted early in the third period, proved to be the game winner as the Canadiens defeated the Pittsburgh Penguins 3-2. Other Montreal scorers were Tomas Plekanec and Alex Kovalev, both collecting a first tally this season. The game was also highlighted by the NHL debut of two rookies and former first-round picks : centreman Kyle Chipchura, who played 12:11 minutes, and netminder Carey Price, who recorded his first win while turning away 26 of the 28 pucks he faced. For the second time in three games the Canadiens outshot their opponents, this time 35 to 28.

4-3 L in OT Oct. 6 @ Toronto Maple Leafs

The Toronto Maple Leafs edged the Canadiens 4-3 on a Tomas Kaberle overtime goal. It was a second consecutive overtime game for the Canadiens, whose goals were produced by defenseman Andrei Markov and forwards Mathieu Dandenault and Andrei Kostitsyn. Markov led all Montreal skaters with 28:53 minutes of ice-time and collected his third (1-2) point of the season with a short-handed goal in the second period. The Canadiens outshot Toronto 31-28 and won 61% of the face-offs.

3-2 W in OT Oct. 3 @ Carolina Hurricanes

Saku Koivu netted two goals including the game winner in overtime against Cam Ward to give the Canadiens a win in their 99th season opener. Christopher Higgins, who set up the game-winning tally, collected six shots on goal while Andrei Markov amassed two assists. Cristobal Huet made 29 saves while his teammates shot 40 times on his counterpart. Defenseman Roman Hamrlik as well as forwards Bryan Smolinski and Tom Kostopoulos played their first game in a Canadiens’ uniform.

UPCOMING GAMES

Three of the next four Canadiens games will be played at the Bell Centre. The team will then play the first of eight back-to-back games this season, October 26-27 in Carolina and Pittsburgh respectively.

16/10/07 vs Florida
18/10/07 @ Ottawa
20/10/07 vs Buffalo
22/10/07 vs Boston
26/10/07 @ Carolina
27/10/07 @ Pittsburgh

ROOKIES IN ACTION

Rookies Carey Price and Kyle Chipchura got to wear the Canadiens uniform for a first time Wednesday, October 10 in Pittsburgh. Chipchura and Price joined rookies Patrick Kane (CHI), Andrew Cogliano (EDM), Sam Gagner (EDM), Jonathan Bernier (LA), Mark Stall (NYR), Erik Johnson (STL) and others who played a very first NHL game this season.

ON A ROLL

Saku Koivu is on a 3-game point streak
Alex Kovalev is on a 3-game point streak
Andrei Markov is on a 3-game point streak and a two-game goal streak.

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