Facing elimination on Saturday night the Montreal Canadiens will be making a couple of changes to their lineup.
Two of them will be coaches decisions by Claude Julien. One of them will be because of injury.
Julien confirmed on Saturday afternoon that forward Andrew Shaw will not play in Game 6 due to an upper-body injury. Julien said he is considered day-to-day at this point.
“He’s a big part of our team, but obviously without him it’s an opportunity for other guys to step up,” said Canadiens forward Brendan Gallagher on Saturday to NBC’s Kaitlin Urka. “We say it all the time, guys drop out of the lineup, other guys are going to come in, very capable players and they are going to be able to do the job.”
There will be a number of new players coming into the lineup on Saturday.
Along with Shaw’s absence, the Canadiens will also be sitting forward Torrey Mitchell and defenseman Nathan Beaulieu. In their place Michael McCarron, Brian Flynn and Brandon Davidson will all draw into the lineup.
Through the first five games of the series Shaw has yet to record a point for the Canadiens and is a minus-two with seven penalty minutes. He played 13 minutes in the Canadiens’ Game 5 loss in Montreal, getting into a fight with Rangers defenseman Brendan Smith.
Aside from Shaw’s injury, the surprising move here might be Julien’s decision to take Mitchell out of the lineup because he has played fairly well in the series in his limited role. In his three games during the series he has a goal and is one of the team’s best players in the faceoff circle.
Davidson was skating on a defense pairing alongside Jordie Benn.