2014 NHL Playoff Pick 'em: Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Montreal Canadiens

See, being dealt to the Islanders let Vanek join a playoff team. - Mike Carlson

Boy, we really should've beaten the Islanders.

The Montreal Canadiens are the road team in their first-round series against the Tampa Bay Lightning, but that didn't look likely a week ago, before the Canadiens laid an egg at home and lost 2-0 to the New York Islanders.

Now the Habs start on the road, their play heading into the playoffs has gone back to alarming, and a healthy and not-suspended Douglas Murray lurks in the background like the menacing beat of The Tell-Tale Heart.

Schedule and TV
Game Date Time (ET) Eastern Conference First Round National TV
1 Wed, Apr 16 7 p.m. Montreal at Tampa Bay CBC, RDS, CNBC
2 Fri, Apr 18 7 p.m. Montreal at Tampa Bay CBC, RDS, CNBC
3 Sun, Apr 20 7 p.m. Tampa Bay at Montreal CBC, RDS, NBCSN
4 Tue, Apr 22 7 p.m. Tampa Bay at Montreal CBC, RDS, NHLN U.S.
5* Thu, Apr 24 7 p.m. Montreal at Tampa Bay CBC, RDS, CNBC
6* Sun, Apr 27 TBD Tampa Bay at Montreal CBC, RDS, NBCSN
7* Tue, Apr 29 TBD Montreal at Tampa Bay CBC, RDS

SB Nation Hangouts

Habs Eyes on the Prize | Raw Charge

Variables, X-Factors and Other Cliches
  • Will Ben Bishop be healthy for the Lightning?
  • (On that note, will he or Cary Price get super hot and be the difference?)
  • Will Michel Therrien resist the urge to play Douglas Murray?
  • (On that note, will Therrien punish P.K. Subban for something small? Or Lars Eller for that matter?)
  • Will the Lightning's rookie stars wilt under the playoff spotlight?
  • (On that note, is there anything to Danny Briere's "playoff clutch" reputation?)
Also

I'm still supposed to be angry the Islanders didn't beat Tampa's 7-year contract offer to Ryan Malone back in 2008-09, right?

Pick 'em

Anyway, will Canada's only entry in this year's playoffs make it past the first round? Or does Tampa Bay get yet another infusion of spring fun in that franchise's endless cycle of feast or famine? Answer in the poll, answer in comments, or move on to your heart's content.

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