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We picked up a nice winner on Monday night as the Blues and Rangers went in to extra time and eventually a shootout to decide the game. The Blues won the shootout on Vladamir Tarasenko’s low-blocker snapshot that beat Cam Talbot to send St. Louis to their fifth straight win. Speaking of Tarasenko, he scored what may stand out to be the goal of the year earlier in the game as he deked through the Rangers defence that attempted to stand him up at the blueline, and proceeded to slide the puck into the net with one hand as he had Talbot going the wrong way. This kid is going to be a superstar in this league soon, if not this year. I was unable to get a pick out yesterday, however we will be back at it tonight with three games on the NHL schedule.
Montreal Canadiens @ Buffalo Sabres
My Pick – CANADIENS -.5 IN REGULATION (-112)
The Montreal Canadiens and Buffalo Sabres meet tonight for the first of four games this season as the Habs look to end a three-game winless skid while the Sabres attempt to win back-to-back games for the first time this season. Montreal has been outscored 14-4 during their three game drought which came to a head last night as they were thumped 5-0 at home by the visiting Chicago Blackhawks. The cure for a winless streak? Play the Buffalo Sabres. The Sabres are on a historically bad goal scoring pace this season. In 13 games so far this year Buffalo has tallied 14 goals. Yes, those numbers equate to a whopping 1.08 goals for per game for this Buffalo team. Former goal scorers such as Drew Stafford, Chris Stewart, Matt Moulson and Brian Gionta have combined to score one goal this season and have a combined rating of -26. Tyler Ennis leads the team with four goals and is tied with Stafford for the team lead with six points. Making matters worse for Buffalo is the fact they give up 3.31 goals per game this season and are averaging 37 shots against per game. Montreal has not been spectacular at finding the net either this season with just 2.15 goals per game and their powerplay is surprisingly poor at 8.4% so far. Not to worry, Buffalo’s powerplay is clicking at 2.4% on the year, and just like their goals per game, ranks dead last in the NHL by a substantial margin. The Habs beat the Sabres in all four games they played last year and shut them out twice in the month of March, something that lingers as a very real possibility once again this evening. Buffalo has managed just three of a possible 12 points at home this season while Montreal has grabbed nine of a possible 16 points on the road so far. A great opportunity lies ahead for Montreal to get back on track and that is just what they will do in regulation time this evening.