- After taking team photos, the Canadiens players had a rare practice in their home rink, ahead of Saturday’s matchup against the Nashville Predators.
- With another game scheduled in a day’s time, the players worked mostly on skills drills and honed their shooting and passing.
Lines at practice:
- The Canadiens skated in Brossard on Thursday morning ahead of their tilt with the Blue Jackets at the Bell Centre.
- Max Pacioretty was absent from practice and will not take part in the game against the Blue Jackets. He suffered a lower-body injury in the first period of Tuesday night's game against the Jets. Pacioretty underwent on MRI on Wednesday, and the Canadiens should be provided with the results of the scan sometime on Thursday.
- Rene Bourque also wasn't present at practice. He is sick with the flu. Head coach Michel Therrien confirmed that if Bourque is unable to go against Columbus, the Habs will dress seven defensemen. In his absence, Nathan Beaulieu skated on a line at practice alongside Michael Bournival and Ryan White.
- Francis Bouillon celebrated his 38th birthday on Thursday.
Lines and D pairings at practice:
- Davis Drewiske underwent shoulder surgery Wednesday morning in Montreal. His recovery is expected to take 5 to 6 months.
- Carey Price will get his fifth start of the season on Tuesday night. He is 10-3-3 in 16 career starts against the Jets/Thrashers.
- Gionta will suit up for his 700th career NHL game on Tuesday night while fellow veteran Josh Gorges will be taking part in his 500thcareer game.
- Michel Therrien made a few more adjustments to his lineup during Monday’s practice. The Habs bench boss decided to move Daniel Briere onto a line with Michael Bournival and Travis Moen, with Ryan White subbing in for reps during the skate.
“We reflected on it for a long time before we made this decision. The reason is purely because of a lack of production. I’m convinced Daniel understands the move. But I believe strongly in using all four lines. That’s how we’ll start tomorrow, but things can change quickly, even in the middle of the game. It all depends on how guys are performing,” explained Therrien.
“It’s not the end of the world. The team is doing well and that’s what matters,” shared Briere. “For sure, personally, it’s not the best. I’d like to be producing more than I have. But I’ve always been the type of guy who gets going a bit later offensively. I’m looking forward to that happening, but there’s no drama here. I’m not worried about it.”
Lines and D pairings at practice
- The Canadiens flew from Vancouver to Winnipeg on Sunday morning and did not practice.
- Captain Brian Gionta will meet the team in Winnipeg on Sunday night.
- Josh Gorges was back on the ice with his teammates on Saturday morning after taking a therapy day on Friday.
- The Canadiens held an optional morning skate on Saturday, with 15 players opting to practice, including Nathan Beaulieu, Jarred Tinordi, Travis Moen, Ryan White, Alex Galchenyuk, Tomas Plekanec, Rene Bourque, Raphael Diaz, Josh Gorges, P.K. Subban, Lars Eller, Michael Bournival, Brendan Gallagher, Peter Budaj and Carey Price.
- Carey Price will get the start against the Canucks. The Anahim Lake, BC native is 3-1-1 in five career starts against Vancouver, including a 2-1-0 record at Rogers Arena.
- Michel Therrien does not expect any players to be called up from Hamilton prior to Saturday's game. Both Ryan White and Michael Bournival will be in the lineup as Gionta will not available to play.
- Josh Gorges was the only other Hab not on the ice on Friday afternoon, taking advantage of a therapy day. He is expected to be in the lineup against the Canucks on Saturday night.
Lines and D pairings at practice
- Hamilton coach Sylvain Lefebvre announced on Thursday that Martin St-Pierre will wear the “C” for the Bulldogs this season. The 30-year-old forward becomes the 12th captain in franchise history and will be joined by assistants Greg Pateryn and Gabriel Dumont in 2013-14.
- Only five players skated at Rexall Place on Thursday morning, including Carey Price, Peter Budaj, Michael Bournival, Ryan White and Nathan Beaulieu.
- Peter Budaj will get the start in goal for the Canadiens. It will be the veteran netminder's first start of the year. In 24 career starts against the Oilers, Budaj has a 14-6-0-3 record and a 2.92 goals-against average. His 14 wins over Edmonton represent the most victories he has recorded against any NHL team.