MONTREAL – Big defenceman Ryan O’Byrne is to return to the Montreal Canadiens lineup for Game 3 of the NHL Eastern Conference final against the net-crashing Philadelphia Flyers.
”Tonight’s my chance to get back in there and show what I can do—go back out there and play physical, play simple and clear the front of the net,” the six-foot-five defenceman said after the team’s game-day skate on Thursday.
”They’ve got some pretty big forwards and they pride themselves on playing down low, cycling the puck, bringing it to the net and trying to score on second and third chances. That’s my game, playing physical and making sure (goaltender) Jaro (Halak) just needs to make that first save.”
O’Byrne sat out Montreal’s last three games.
It is expected that defenceman Marc-Andre Bergeron will be kept in the lineup at left wing on the fourth line so he is available to play the point on the power play. Forward Mathieu Darche is expected to come out of the lineup.
Meanwhile, Flyers star centre Jeff Carter skated with the full team for the first time since he broke a bone in his right foot April 20 against New Jersey. He looked to be skating with no trouble, but he is not expected to return until later in the series. He has missed 10 games.
”Jeff looked good—he’s skating, shooting, passing,” said coach Peter Laviolette.
Carter did not speak to the media.
The Flyers lead the best-of-seven series 2-0 after a pair of shutout win in Philadelphia.