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Florida Panthers Try to Continue Dominance of Canadiens

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Florida Panthers bennett tkachuk
The Florida Panthers will try to continue their dominance over the Canadiens tonight in Montreal. Carter Verhaeghe, here celebrating his goal against the Canadiens last year with Matthew Tkachuk and Sam Bennett, may not play due to an injury sustained Monday night. (AP Photo/Rebecca Blackwell)

The Florida Panthers are smarting after a rough start to their game Monday night and the Montreal Canadiens could be the perfect elixir.

The Panthers have taken care of business against the Canadiens time and again.

With its shootout win in Sunrise last month, Florida has won 11 of the past 12 against the Canadiens including the past seven.

In those 11 wins against Montreal, it is outscoring the Canadiens 59-26.

The Panthers are heavy betting favorites (-225 on the money line) tonight at Bell Center.

Florida will be trying to win without two of its top players: Carter Verhaeghe is out after sustaining an upper-body injury in the third period of a 6-4 loss to the host Toronto Maple Leafs.

Matthew Tkachuk is also out with illness.

Paul Maurice said Verhaeghe will be out perhaps through the end of the regular season.

Nick Cousins, who was scratched Monday, returns to the lineup.

As does Kyle Okposo, who has only played in three of 10 games since being acquired from Buffalo at the NHL Trade Deadline.

One player who will be in tonight is captain Sasha Barkov who simply loves playing the Canadiens.

In 34 games against Montreal, Barkov has 46 points off 24 goals.

The starting goalies tonight will be Anthony Stolarz going against Sam Montembeault.

ON DECK

FLORIDA PANTHERS @ MONTREAL CANADIENS

PROJECTED FLORIDA PANTHERS (47-23-5) LINEUP

13 Sam Reinhart // 16 Sasha Barkov // 10 Vladimir Tarasenko

17 Evan Rodrigues // 9 Sam Bennett // 21 Nick Cousins

27 Eetu Luostarinen //15 Anton Lundell // 94 Ryan Lomberg

8 Kyle Okposo // 82 Kevin Stenlund // 18 Steven Lorentz

42 Gus Forsling // 5 Aaron Ekblad

77 Niko Mikkola // 62 Brandon Montour

91 Oliver Ekman-Larsson // 7 Dmitry Kulikov

41 Anthony Stolarz

72 Sergei Bobrovsky

Scratched: Jonah Gadjovich, Josh Mahura, Toby Bjornfot

Injured: Carter Verhaeghe (upper body), Matthew Tkachuk (illness)

PROJECTED MONTREAL CANADIENS (28-33-12) LINEUP

22 Cole Caufield // 14  Nick Suzuki // 20 Juraj Slafkovsky

11 Brendan Gallagher // 15 Alex Newhook // 40 Joel Armia

17 Josh Anderson // 71 Jake Evans // 56 Jesse Ylonen

55 Michael Pezzetta // 36 Colin White // 49 Rafael Harvey-Pinard

8 Mike Matheson // 21 Kaiden Guhle

72 Arber Xhekaj //58 David Savard

47 Jayden Struble // 54 Jordan Harris

35 Sam Montembeault

30 Cayden Primeau

Scratched: Johnathan Kovacevic, Tanner Pearson

Injured: Joshua Roy (upper body)

Montreal Canadiens lines courtesy NHL.com

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