Skip navigation
Sign up to follow your favorites on all your devices.
Sign up

The Canadiens ready for some bumps in the road starting this week

Boston Bruins v Montreal Canadiens

MONTREAL, QC - DECEMBER 12: Head coach of the Montreal Canadiens Michel Therrien regroups his team during the NHL game against the Boston Bruins at the Bell Centre on December 12, 2016 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The Boston Bruins defeated the Montreal Canadiens 2-1 in overtime. (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)

Getty Images

Even with some recent stumbles, the Montreal Canadiens head into 2017 in a pretty strong position. Still, they’ll need to navigate some tough waters ahead.

It’s not just injuries that might prove a challenge to the Habs, either. Only the New York Islanders have enjoyed a friendlier home-to-road ratio so far in 2016-17, but that will “correct” itself in a harsh way soon.

Take a look at how the schedule breaks to end 2016 and begin 2017:

Wednesday (Dec. 28): at Lightning
Thursday (Dec. 29): at Panthers
Saturday (Dec. 31): at Penguins
Jan. 3: at Predators
Jan. 4: at Stars
Jan. 7: at Maple Leafs
Jan. 9: vs. Capitals
Jan. 11: at Jets
Jan. 12: at Wild

Considering the three back-to-back sets and the fact that they have just one home game in that bunch, there are some legitimate challenges in those couple weeks.

While there are some elements that do relieve the tension a bit - getting a break after New Year’s Eve - it’s still a pretty tough haul.

With so much focus on narratives that are a little more abstract - like chemistry - we often lose sight of the influence a schedule can have on a team’s fate, especially in a salary cap era of parity. We could learn a lot about this rendition of the Montreal Canadiens over the next two weeks.