After rallying late to beat one the league's weakest teams in their last game, the Montreal Canadiens now will try to avoid extending a losing streak against the NHL's best.
Montreal looks to snap a three-game skid against the Boston Bruins on Sunday when they meet at the Bell Centre, where the Canadiens have enjoyed a great deal of success in recent years against their Northeast Division rivals.
The Canadiens are 0-2-1 in their last three meetings with the Bruins (36-8-6), but both regulation losses came in Boston. Despite falling in a shootout on Nov. 22, Montreal is 12-1-1 at home against Boston going back to Oct. 18, 2005.
Guy Carbonneau's club needed some late heroics on Saturday to snap a season-high four-game losing streak. Christopher Higgins and Saku Koivu scored in the final 1:53 as the Canadiens defeated Los Angeles 4-3.
Higgins' sixth goal tied the score at 3 before Koivu scored his eighth on the power play with 22.3 seconds to play, ending the slide while sending Montreal (28-15-6) to its fourth straight home win.
"It's a start, but that's all it is," said All-Star goaltender Carey Price, who made 29 saves for his first win in four starts after returning from an ankle injury that sidelined him for almost three weeks. "It's a start, you know, we've got to keep moving from here."
Since coming back in relief of Jaroslav Halak on Jan. 20, Price has allowed 18 goals in five appearances. He's 3-0-1 with a 2.59 goals-against average in his career at home against Boston.
Fellow All-Star Andrei Markov, who assisted on Koivu's game-winner, has two goals and 10 assists in the last 11 games, and a team-leading 39 points.
Earlier on Saturday, Boston's Tuukka Rask recorded his first NHL shutout by making 35 saves to beat the New York Rangers 1-0.
Making his first start in almost 14 months, Rask became the third Boston goaltender to record a shutout this season. All-Star Tim Thomas, who has three, was rested, while Manny Fernandez, who has one, missed the game with a back injury and didn't travel with the team for this contest.
"I thought this was a perfect time to give Timmy a break," Boston coach Claude Julien said. "We've got another big game (Sunday). Timmy has carried a bulk of the load, and we've tried to give him some days off. ... We saw some signs of fatigue from Tim, but that gives him an extra game rest. Hopefully, he can come up with a big game tomorrow."
Thomas is 21-5-5 with a 2.15 GAA this season, but 2-5-2 with a 3.25 GAA in 10 games in Montreal.
Marc Savard scored his 19th goal late in the second period on Saturday to extend two streaks. He's found the back of the net in three straight games, and has five goals and three assists in a seven-game run.
Savard leads the Bruins with 60 points.
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