Blue Jackets looking for revenge vs. Canadiens

The Montreal Canadiens will look to defeat the Columbus Blue Jackets for the second time in the span of a week when the Habs visit Columbus, Ohio, on Tuesday.

The two Eastern Conference rivals went to a shootout on Nov. 12 in Montreal, with Jonathan Drouin scoring the deciding goal in a 3-2 Canadiens victory.

Columbus rebounded from that tough loss with a 3-2 victory of their own against the St. Louis Blues on Friday. The Blue Jackets trailed 2-1 after a lackluster opening 40 minutes before Pierre-Luc Dubois tied the score in the third period and Zach Werenski scored the overtime winner.

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"As ugly as we were in the first two periods, we were that good in the third period and we (seemed to) find a way," Blue Jackets coach John Tortorella said. "We always talk about finding a way in this league, and tonight we did. ... Probably 50 percent of your wins in this league are ugly wins."

Aesthetically pleasing or not, Columbus will take whatever victories it can find during a tough start to the season. The Jackets' 18 points put them near the bottom of the league standings, and the club's 45 goals are the fewest of any team.

Rookie center Emil Bemstrom has been a rare offensive bright spot for Columbus. He is on a four-game points streak (two goals, two assists) and had a helper on Dubois' game-tying goal Friday.

Joonas Korpisalo is expected to start in net for Columbus on Tuesday. Korpisalo has a 3.04 goals-against average and .897 save percentage over 15 games. He did not face the Canadiens last week.

Carey Price held the Blue Jackets in check during last week's game, as the Montreal goalie saved 33 of 35 shots. Price has a 3-0-1 record and .935 save percentage over his last four games, and is expected to be back in action following a night off Saturday against the New Jersey Devils.

Unfortunately for the Canadiens, some of the players on the ice also didn't seem present at certain key moments on Saturday. After a big 5-2 win over the Washington Capitals on Friday, Montreal saw its three-game win streak end with a 4-3 overtime loss to the Devils.

The game was marred by penalties and defensive lapses, which Habs coach Claude Julien described as "unacceptable if you want to win hockey games. That's what cost us tonight."

"When we're playing on the second half of a back-to-back, we need to be alert mentally. We need to make up for our fatigue with good decisions, and tonight we didn't. Bad decisions cost us two late goals tonight."

The Devils scored in the final minute of both the first and second periods on Saturday. The Canadiens have allowed 11 goals in the final minute of a period this season.

As shaky as the performance was, Montreal still came away with a point. The Canadiens have suffered only one regulation loss over their last 10 games (7-1-2).

Shea Weber has eight points (four goals, four assists) over a six-game point streak. Tomas Tatar also has points in each of his last four games, with two goals and five assists over that stretch.

Montreal forward Paul Byron is out indefinitely with a knee injury that will require a surgical procedure. The Canadiens also will be without Drouin, who is scheduled for wrist surgery Monday.

The Canadiens are 1-5-0 in their last six trips to Columbus.

--Field Level Media

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