One night following the Habs' wild 8-6 loss to Boston, which included 46 penalties and a goalie scrap, the Bell Centre was buzzing this morning with people enthused about "old-time hockey."
Several of the Islanders were able to catch the game last night. Unsurprisingly, tough guys like Trevor Gillies and Zenon Konopka were fired up by the melee-filled madness.
"It was a little old school there. It was a really fun game to watch as a fan," Gillies said. "Obviously that's fun stuff for me. It's really cool to see both teams sticking together, that's what it's about."
With the extra charge provided from last night's game, Bell Centre promises to be as entertaining as usual. Hard to prepare 22-year-old rookie Mikko Koskinen for a night like tonight. Suffice it to say that Bell Centre is a far cry from the Yard in Bridgeport. Should be interesting to see how he handles the atmosphere in his second NHL start.
"It's a big test, obviously. He was thrown into the fire with Kevin getting hurt in warmups the other night. At least he's had a day and a half or two to focus and prepare for the game, but it is a tremendous atmosphere here."
Koskinen said some teammates have already prepared him for what to expect.
"I've heard a couple things like there's singing and stuff like that. That's unbelievable. I like that kind of atmosphere."
Bruno Gervais returns to the lineup tonight after missing two games with back spasms. Ty Wishart is out.
Alex Auld is in goal tonight for Montreal tonight.