B.C. native Carey Price and the Montreal Canadiens host the Vancouver Canucks on Tuesday night

Point Shots: Canucks face Canadiens; Tim Thompson’s Beliveau Tribute; NHL Gambling on Las Vegas

Vancouver heads to Montreal to wrap up its 2-week road trip, on a night the Habs honour legend Jean Beliveau at the Bell Centre.

– The Vancouver Canucks take on the Montreal Canadiens tonight at the Bell Centre, ending a seven-game road trip while they try to avoid suffering a third straight loss in eastern Canada. (The Canucks lost 5-2 to the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday and 4-3 to the Ottawa Senators on Sunday.)

– It’ll be an emotional, passionate night in La Belle Province, as the Habs franchise honours one of their greatest-ever players, the late Jean Beliveau.

Beliveau passed away last week at age 83. He won 10 Stanley Cups as a player with the Habs and was only the second player to ever record 1,000 NHL points.

Hockey Night in Canada‘s montage maestro Tim Thompson posted his tribute to Beliveau online on Tuesday. Not surprisingly, it’s terrific:

– Ryan Miller will start in goal for Vancouver. He was pulled Saturday night in Toronto, after allowing four goals on 14 shots.

– The Montreal Canadiens have lost six of their last seven games.

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Anaheim forward Corey Perry will be out for three-to-four weeks as he recovers from a knee injury – reportedly a sprain. Perry was injured last Friday on a hip-check from Minnesota Wild d-man Keith Ballard.

– “The day after it was pretty stiff, but it’s feeling better every day,” Perry said (NHL.com). “We’re thankful it was only a sprain and not a tear.”

Corey Perry - Anaheim Ducks

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– Commissioner Gary Bettman has given a green light of sorts to prospective owner Bill Foley, allowing the millionaire to start a season ticket drive in Las Vegas to meter locals’ interest in an expansion NHL team.

– Vegas is one of several cities that has been a rumoured target for league expansion recently, along with Seattle, Quebec City, and Toronto (which would potentially get a second team beside the Maple Leafs).

– “Mr. Foley, who is investing a considerable amount of time and effort in expressing his interest, wants to have a good idea as to whether or not it’s a good idea,” Bettman said Tueday in Boca Raton, Florida. “We’re interested to know the results, as well… if he just wants people to sign a piece of paper and say I’m interested, I’m not sure that’s the same as somebody taking a deposit.”

– Of note, Bettman referenced former RIM CEO Jim Balsillie’s aggressive effort to gain grassroots support to move the Nashville Predators to Hamilton: “The only other precedent, which was a bad precedent, was somebody went off without permission and did it in the context of moving an existing club that wasn’t going to move,” he said.

Las Vegas Strip

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