After suffering a disappointing loss to the Arizona Coyotes at home Thursday night, the Canadiens didn't need to sulk for long. The team announced after the game that Carey Price would be making his return after nearly three weeks out of the lineup with injury and would be starting against the New York Islanders. That's just the kind of lift a team needs in the second half of back-to-back games.
The Habs will be challenged, though. The Islanders have been pretty solid on home ice and have won three of their last four games. They'll also be rested with three days off since their last game while the Habs had to travel after Thursday's game.
In those last three wins, the Isles have scored a total of 13 goals, four of which came off the stick of captain John Tavares. The Isles skipper has six points over his last four games and is up to 17 on the season. He'll give Montreal all they can handle.
However, with the Canadiens getting their MVP back and coming off of a pretty bitter loss in which they gave up the game's first three goals against the Coyotes, they might have a little extra jump Friday. They also have the benefit of having beaten the Islanders once this year, 4-1 victory two weeks. In fact, the Habs have won four straight over the Isles dating back to last season.
Though Montreal is dealing with a few injuries – Torrey Mitchell and Alexei Emelin are expected to miss the weekend's games – they still have all of their top end players ready to go. That now includes Price and his .936 save percentage this season. You can expect the Habs to go all out for their MVP in his first game back.