Eastern Conference Finals, Game 3
#7 Philadelphia Flyers at #8 Montreal Canadiens
Flyers lead series 2-0
Bell Centre - 7:00 PM ET - Montreal, Quebec, Canada
TV: Versus HD, CBC HD, RDS HD
Radio: 610 WIP (internet stream here), XM 204 (Montreal Feed), XM 205 (Philadelphia Feed), SIRIUS 208
Get the Montreal perspective at Habs Eyes On The Prize
If the Flyers are to win Game 3 in Montreal this evening, it's going to take a better effort than they showed in Game 2 and even Game 1. Michael Leighton isn't going to, nor should he be expected to, steal you four wins in a series, and as the Flyers head into the hornets nest known as Bell Centre in Montreal, it's vital that they get off to a better start than they have in the first two games of the series.
Sure, it's true Montreal hasn't scored a goal thus far in the series. But going home, where their rabid fans are going to be ready to burn down the nearest thing in sight should the Habs take an early 1-0 lead, the Flyers need to avoid that at all costs. They need to take the play to Halak and the Canadiens right away, putting those maniacs down swiftly.
It doesn't seem like it'll be as easy to get in front of Halak tonight, though. Montreal will play with seven defensemen tonight, putting Marc-Andre Bergeron in a more offensive role while giving big, physical defenseman Ryan O'Byrne free reign to get the Flyers out of Halak's crease.
Because of this, matchups will be key, and you'll have to expect the Canadiens to switch things up a bit. I'd expect to see different matchups against the Briere line, as the Canadiens need to shut them down. If they're able to do that successfully, Simon Gagne and Mike Richards need to step up and fill the offensive hole.
Montreal doesn't have enough fire power on the defensive end to stop the Flyers, but in order to ensure a win, Philadelphia needs to step up at 5-on-5. If they do that, there shouldn't be any problems. If they don't, they can let Montreal back into the series.
Game thread at 6 PM.