NHL On Tap: Gallagher leads Canadiens against Canucks

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Welcome to the NHL On Tap. Three NHL.com writers will share what they are most looking forward to on the schedule each day. Today, their choices from the six games Monday.

Hot Gallagher leads Canadiens against Boeser, streaking Canucks

Montreal Canadiens forward Brendan Gallagher skated almost meekly into last week, held without a point in his four previous games. But that ended emphatically at Bell Centre in Montreal, where he scored six points (four goals, two assists) in three games, a streak he brings into his offseason home for a two-game set at the Vancouver Canucks (10 p.m. ET; TSN2, SNP, RDS, NHL.TV). The Canadiens are 2-1-2 under new coach Dominique Ducharme, roaring to a 7-1 win against the Winnipeg Jets on Saturday, when Gallagher scored two goals and had an assist. It was the second time this season Montreal scored seven goals in a game; they won 7-3 against the Canucks on Jan. 21. But Vancouver has a head of steam after sweeping the NHL-leading Toronto Maple Leafs in a two-game home set. The Canadiens went 2-0-1 in Vancouver in January, then swept two from the Canucks at Montreal in February, outscoring them 11-5 in those two games. Canucks forward Brock Boeser, with a goal and two assists against Toronto on Saturday, brings a Vancouver-best 28 points (13 goals, 15 assists) to the game at Rogers Arena. — Dave Stubbs, columnist

Game 2 for Tarasenko

OK, this will be his second game back, but I want to see how Vladimir Tarasenko looks for the St. Louis Blues when they visit the San Jose Sharks (9 p.m. ET; NBCSCA, FS-MW, NHL.TV). After having shoulder surgery in early September 2020, Tarasenko made his season debut in a 4-3 overtime loss to the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday. The forward hadn’t played since Game 2 of the Western Conference First Round against the Vancouver Canucks on Aug. 14, 2020, after playing 10 regular-season games because of shoulder surgery Oct. 24, 2019. He was minus-2 and had four shots on goal in 16:25 of ice time against the Kings. His return could be a big boost for the Blues, who are second in the Honda West Division. The Sharks, meanwhile, are 1-4-1 and have been shut out twice during their current seven-game homestand. It’ll be a tough challenge against the Blues, who are 10-2-1 on the road this season. — Tracey Myers, staff writer

Wild continue push 

The Minnesota Wild’s quick rebuild has been one of the better storylines this season. The process has been sped up by forward Kirill Kaprizov, who leads NHL rookies with 19 points (six goals, 13 assists) in 22 games. Forward Jordan Greenway is experiencing an uptick in production, scoring 18 points (five goals, 13 assists) in 22 games, helping provide Minnesota some scoring depth. The Wild’s points percentage (.614) is fourth in the West behind the Vegas Golden Knights (.786), Colorado Avalanche (.636) and Blues (.620), proving that they are among the contending teams. They will have another chance to prove they not only can compete, but win, against the top team in the division when they host the Golden Knights (8 p.m. ET; NHLN, SN1, SNE, SNO, FS-N, FS-WI, ATSSN-RM, NHL.TV). Minnesota lost twice at Vegas to begin March (5-4 in overtime March 1, 5-1 on March 3) and need to show they can defeat the best in the West. — Rob Reese, fantasy editor

Monday schedule

Vegas Golden Knights at Minnesota Wild, 8 p.m. ET (NHLN, SN1, SNE, SNO, FS-N, FS-WI, ATTSN-RM, NHL.TV)

Forward Alex Tuch has scored five goals in his past four games for Vegas, which looks to extend its winning streak to seven.

St. Louis Blues at San Jose Sharks, 9 p.m. ET (NBCSCA, FS-MW, NHL.TV)

The Blues close a six-game road trip; they are 4-0-1 in the first five games.

Ottawa Senators at Edmonton Oilers, 9 p.m. ET (ESPN+, SNW, TSN5, RDS2, NHL.TV)

The Oilers, who are 1-3-0 on their current seven-game homestand, are 4-0-0 against the Senators this season and will host them for three straight.

Arizona Coyotes at Colorado Avalanche, 9 p.m. ET (ESPN+, ALT, FS-A, NHL.TV)

Nathan MacKinnon could return for Colorado. The forward missed the past two games after being hit in the head March 3.

Montreal Canadiens at Vancouver Canucks, 10 p.m. ET (SNP, TSN2, RDS, NHL.TV)

The Canadiens will try to win consecutive games for the first time since Feb. 1-2, when they won two straight against the Canucks. Montreal is 12-0-2 in its past 14 games against Vancouver since Nov. 16, 2015.

Los Angeles Kings at Anaheim Ducks, 10 p.m. ET (PRIME, FS-SD, FS-W, NHL.TV)

The Ducks ended an 0-6-3 stretch with a 5-4 overtime win against the Avalanche on Saturday. They have won consecutive games once this season (Jan 24-26).

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