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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Tuesday, March 18th (All times Eastern)

Colorado Avalanche (44-19-5) at Montreal Canadiens (37-25-7), 7:30 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - Patrick Roy will no doubt get a positive reception from the Bell Centre crowd on Tuesday night ahead of the Colorado Avalanche's game versus the hosting Montreal Canadiens.

It will then be back to business once the puck drops as the two clubs battle for key points in their respective playoff races.

Roy, of course, was a third-round pick by the Canadiens franchise in the 1984 draft and spent his first 10-plus seasons with Montreal before his infamous trade to Colorado in December of 1995 after a fallout with then head coach Mario Tremblay.

During his time with the Habs, Roy won a pair of Conn Smythe Trophies and Stanley Cup titles in 1986 and 1993. He also won two Cups and another Conn Smythe award with the Avalanche.

Roy has since had his No. 33 jersey retired by the Canadiens and faced Montreal for the first time as a coach when the Avalanche picked up a 4-1 victory at home on Nov. 2.

It was Colorado's fourth straight win over the Habs and it has also won its past two in Montreal.

Roy admitted after Sunday's win over the Ottawa Senators that he hadn't been looking ahead to this matchup.

"Now I'm going to think about it, but before that I was not really focusing on this," said Roy. "I've been talking to our players that I want a partnership with them. I want us to focus on what we have to do every night and take it one day at a time. I have to do the same thing as them.

"I have a lot of respect for the Montreal organization and I have a lot of respect for the fans in Montreal. They were a big part of my career, my 10 years there (were) outstanding, and now that we're going to play them I'm just going to try and approach it as a hockey game."

The big storyline for both clubs isn't the reunion as much as the chase for playoff positioning. Colorado is second in the Central Division with 93 points, one ahead of the Chicago Blackhawks and eight back of the St. Louis Blues.

Montreal, meanwhile, is tied for second in the Atlantic Division with the Tampa Bay Lightning, a distant 16 points behind the Boston Bruins. However, the Canadiens also are only one point ahead of the fourth-place Toronto Maple Leafs.

Habs goaltender Carey Price said on Monday that the club needs to focus on the game and not the return of Roy.

"(He) is obviously a special player, when it comes to this franchise. But at the end of the day it's not about that. It's about our team versus theirs on the ice and right now we're in desperation mode trying to pick up points," said Price, though he did admit that Roy was one of his favorite goaltenders.

"He was the favorite among many in my generation. It's pretty exciting to have the opportunity to play against him, indirectly I guess."

Price missed Montreal's first eight games after the Winter Olympic break having suffered a lower-body injury while helping lead Canada to a second straight gold medal. He finally returned to action on Saturday in a 5-4 overtime win against the Ottawa Senators, then did not make his club's trip to Buffalo to get extra rest.

Instead, Dustin Tokarski played in his 10th NHL game and notched a 29-save shutout, the first of his career, in a 2-0 win over the Sabres. He helped Montreal to its second straight win following a three-game slide.

"The main thing is the two points," Tokarski said. "It was just a little icing on the cake with the shutout."

Dale Weise and Brendan Gallagher scored the goals for the Habs.

Price is get the start tonight and is 0-2-1 with a 3.61 goals against average versus the Avalanche.

Colorado has won seven of its last nine and notched a 3-1 triumph over Ottawa on Sunday. Andre Benoit, Nick Holden and John Mitchell supplied the goals and Semyon Varlamov made 38 saves.

Varlamov came within six seconds of a shutout before getting beat on a one- time blast from the point by Ottawa's Mika Zibanejad.

"He played so well ... The guys wanted to get the shutout for (Varlamov), but they made a great play," said Roy.

Forward Matt Duchene collected two assists as Colorado played a fourth game in a row without Paul Stastny due to a back issue.

The Avalanche will visit the Winnipeg Jets on Wednesday and backup Jean- Sebastien Giguere will get the start tonight. The Montreal-born Giguere is 8-3-1 against the Canadiens with a 2.49 GAA.

03/18 10:56:12 ET

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  • SEC: Arkansas at Florida

    Saturday at 2:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • PGA: Waste Management Phoenix Open

    Saturday at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • SEC: Kentucky at Missouri

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    Tomorrow at 7:00 pm on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
Final
ND 77
DUKE 73
Final
SAN 95
CHA 86
Final
NCSU 57
CLEM 68
Final
MEM 70
ECU 58
Final
PHI 89
DET 69
Final
CLE 99
POR 94
Final
TOR 119
SAC 102
Final
MIN 110
BOS 98
Final
ATL 113
BRK 102
Final
HOU 99
DAL 94
Final
NOP 85
DEN 93
Final
NYK 100
OKC 92
Final
SAN 95
CHA 86
Final
UTA 89
LAC 94
Final
PHO 106
WAS 98
7:00pm Tonight
ORL
MIL
 
7:00pm Tonight
IND
NYK
 
8:00pm Tonight
MEM
DEN
 
10:30pm Tonight
LAL
CHI
 
Final
VERM 44
GTDNS 47
 
Final
NAVY 64
AMER 54
 
Final
UMBC 56
BING 68
 
Final
JMU 88
DEL 82
 
Final
RICH 86
DUQ 55
Final
UNCW 82
ELON 65
 
Final
USB 72
HART 66
 
Final
WMARY 100
HOF 79
 
Final
COL 54
LAF 59
 
Final
PSU 63
MINN 58
Final
MAINE 58
UNH 63
 
Final
DREX 65
NE 60
 
Final
FORD 63
RIU 64
Final
SFLA 52
SMU 63
Final
MARQ 70
SHU 80
Final
LSU 64
SCAR 58
Final
UCF 62
TEMPL 86
Final
LONG 64
UNCA 74
 
Final
FSU 82
WAKE 76
Final
CCAR 68
WINT 75
 
Final
OU 84
WRST 76
 
Final
ND 77
DUKE 73
7:30pm Wednesday
GHND 0
HC 0
 
Final
CSOU 77
RAD 84
 
Final
OKLA 81
TTU 36
Final
BRAD 57
DRAK 69
 
Final
BUCK 68
LEH 62
 
Final
WICHS 58
LOYC 47
Final
ILLST 67
MIZST 57
 
Final
PEAY 69
MORE 82
 
Final
SDKST 86
NEOM 64
 
Final
ARST 73
ORST 55
Final
HOU 59
RICE 48
Final
SILL 52
NIOWA 59
Final
NCSU 57
CLEM 68
Final
MEM 70
ECU 58
Final
MIAMI 50
GT 70
Final
PURD 83
IND 67
Final
TCU 61
KU 64
Final
BC 72
LOU 81
Final
MISS 79
MSST 73
Final
CREI 77
STJ 74
Final
SJST 52
AFA 66
Final
ARZ 90
OREG 56
Final
WASH 74
STAN 84
2:00pm Today
PROV
DEP
 
6:00pm Tonight
RUTG
MSU
 
7:00pm Tonight
ARMY
BU
 
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RFLSH
BRY
 
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MERC
CHAT
 
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LIU
CCST
 
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TOWS
COC
 
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UMASS
DAY
 
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FUR
ETST
 
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ODU
FIU
 
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RMU
FD
 
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CHAR
FATL
 
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LIB
HIGH
 
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UNF
KNST
 
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FLGC
LIP
 
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OSU
MD
 
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Terriers
MNTER
 
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STET
NKENTUCKY
 
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WAGN
SHU
 
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GMAS
STLU
 
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JVU
USCU
 
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VMI
WCU
 
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LATU
WKENT
 
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UNCG
WOFF
 
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DET
YOUNG
 
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GSOUT
APP
 
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TENNM
EILL
 
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GHND
HC
 
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CIN
UCONN
 
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NDST
DEN
 
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SD
MAST
 
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UWMIL
ILLCH
 
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BEL
JVST
 
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SMISS
MARS
 
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TXSA
MTST
 
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PETE
RIDE
 
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SEMIZ
SIUE
 
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TENST
TENT
 
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NDAK
WEBER
 
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SALA
LALAF
 
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TXARL
UGST
 
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ARKST
ARKLR
 
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TROY
LAMON
 
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MURST
EKENT
 
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NCOL
IDST
 
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MIZZ
KENT
 
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GONZ
PORT
 
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UTEP
UAB
 
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GRCN
UMKC
 
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WLVRN
CHIST
 
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USC
COL
 
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UCI
CPSL
 
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CSNO
HAW
 
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PAC
PEPP
 
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SDU
SCU
 
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UCD
UCSB
 
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UCLA
UTAH
 
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PORST
MONT
 
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SACST
MNTST
 
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CSFU
LBSU
 
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GAELS
LMU
 
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WASU
CAL
 
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BYU
USF
 
Final
NJD 2
TOR 1
Final
WAS 4
PIT 0
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NYI
BOS
 
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NYR
MON
 
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PHI
WIN
 
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TOR
ARI
 
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FLA
CLB
 
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OTT
DAL
 
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TAM
DET
 
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STL
NAS
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CAL
MIN
 
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EDM
BUF
 
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SJS
ANA