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Montreal scouting report

Posted by Fluto Shinzawa, Globe Staff  April 16, 2009 02:38 PM

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Which Alex Kovalev will show up for this series? (Paul Chiasson/Canadian Press)

From this observer, the Canadiens are a skilled team up front that will need a sterling performance between the pipes and some efficient puck-moving from the back end to keep up with the Bruins.

Here's my take on the Montreal roster:

Carey Price

Once considered the next big thing, Price came down to earth this season... Struggled with consistency and confidence issues... A pads-down goalie... Can be beaten upstairs... Could get hot and steal the series.

Tom Kostopoulos

Warrior on the third line who'll get his nose dirty... Was one of the most effective players in last year's series, skating with Steve Begin and Bryan Smolinski... Won't back down from any rough stuff.

Mike Komisarek

Public Enemy No. 1 in Boston... A shot-blocking, check-throwing, shutdown defenseman who will see plenty of Milan Lucic in his face... Is a threat to anger the Bruins and force them to take stupid penalties.

Saku Koivu

Montreal captain and first-line center who has heart to make up for his size... Has seen his better days, but is still effective in the danger areas... Plays bigger than he is.

Alex Tanguay

Highly skilled winger who likes to shoot... Has shown chemistry with Koivu and Alex Kovalev... Could see a lot of Patrice Bergeron and mates.

Tomas Plekanec

Delivered the quote of the series last year when he said he played "like a little girl."... A skilled center who dropped off significantly this season... Was a thorn in Bruins' side during regular season last year, so will be dangerous.

Glen Metropolit

Ex-Bruin who played a big part in last year's success... Fourth-line center who kills penalties and doesn't make many mistakes... Won't be counted on for offense.

Georges Laraque

Maybe the undisputed heavyweight of the league... Talked smack about Shawn Thornton and a few other Bruins yesterday... Feared fighter but not exactly a skilled all-around forward.

Christopher Higgins

Once considered a top-six winger, but is now working on the fourth line... Will also kill penalties... Can pop in goals but has had a disappointing season.

Mathieu Schneider

Still a high-level puck-moving defenseman at his advanced age... Is supposedly playing with a bad wing... Dangerous shot from the point.

Mathieu Dandenault

Flips between forward and defense at the drop of a hat... Will be on defense to start the series.

Josh Gorges

A stay-at-home defenseman who is usually reliable in own zone... Dropped the gloves with Shane Hnidy last week but never threw any punches... Character guy who's well-liked in the room.

Alex Kovalev

As skilled a player as you can find in the league... That's if he's interested in playing... Strong on the puck, good skater, top-shelf shot.

Matt D'Agostini

Grinder who popped in two goals against the Bruins last week... Playing in his first Boston-Montreal playoff series.

Maxim Lapierre

Another one on the list of players that Bruins love to hate... An agitator who can throw hits but isn't known as a fighter... Dropped the gloves with P.J. Axelsson in a serious heavyweight bout... Has showed decent skill this season in a featured role.

Roman Hamrlik

Two-way defenseman who had a heck of a series last year, but hasn't been the same player this season... Will be taking on more responsibilities with loss of Andrei Markov.

Andrei Kostitsyn

Not well-liked in the Boston room... Skilled winger with a reputation of throwing cheap hits... Had a down year but still scored 23 goals.

Patrice Brisebois

Lots of mileage on those legs, but still considered an elite skater... Will be on defense instead of Yannick Weber tonight.

Guillaume Latendresse

Big body in Milan Lucic mold, but not quite there yet... Injured his shoulder during a Boston-Montreal game at the Bell Centre this season... Should get better as a power forward with time.

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