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Notebook - November 28

The Canadiens will be looking to exorcise their California demons beginning on Tuesday night in Anaheim

by Matt Cudzinowski @canadiensmtl /

ANAHEIM - In Monday's practice notebook, praise for Greg Pateryn and Mark Barberio, the Canadiens look for better results in California, and thoughts on Gerard Gallant.  

Keeping things the same: When the Canadiens hit the ice in Orange County on Tuesday night against the Ducks, they'll likely be featuring the same lineup that downed the Red Wings back on Saturday night in Detroit.

That means that even though defenseman Zach Redmond joined the team for practice on Monday afternoon at the Honda Center following a two-game conditioning stint with the AHL's St. John's IceCaps, he probably won't see game action right away on the back end.

For their part, Greg Pateryn and Mark Barberio will be paired together again as head coach Michel Therrien was impressed by their efforts in the Motor City.

"They played very well together. They defended well. Their transition game was good," praised Therrien. "When they're at the top of their game, it allows us to save ice time on guys like [Andrei] Markov and [Shea] Weber, guys in our Top 4. It's an advantage for the whole team."

It was also confirmed that Carey Price would get the start in goal on Tuesday night as well.

Video: Michel Therrien on his lineup in Anaheim

No California love: The Golden State has been anything but kind to the Canadiens over the last three seasons. Since the 2013-14 campaign, Montreal has managed to collect just four out of a possible 18 points on California soil against the likes of Anaheim, San Jose and Los Angeles, posting a 1-6-2 record during that span. 

And, that one and only victory came by way of a shootout on March 15, 2014 at the Honda Center, where the Canadiens will begin their quest to exorcise their California demons on Tuesday night.

"You come in, and they're a team with a lot of skill and some big bodies. They're going to play a physical game," said Andrew Shaw, who fully expects Randy Carlyle's club to come out strong in an effort to rattle the Canadiens early. "We've got to use our speed and skill and make sure that we get pucks behind the D and work them that way."

Using their "speed and skill" has really been the Canadiens' bread and butter so far this season, and captain Max Pacioretty says sticking to that same formula against Western Conference opponents is a must to have success - even if they're likely going to be confronted with a far more physical brand of hockey than they're typically used to in the East. 

"We're going up against teams that play very, very different from us. We've got to make sure that we don't get caught up in trying to play like them because we're built to play with speed and they're a more grinding, offensive zone, physical style out here in the West, especially the West Coast," explained Pacioretty. "We want to play our game, not worry about who we're playing and not worry about how they play. We just hope to come out and show a strong performance every night."

Video: Max Pacioretty on staying true to a style of play

That being said, head coach Michel Therrien believes certain key additions to the Canadiens' lineup over the summer will likely play an important role in turning the team's fortunes around up and down the state in the days that follow.

"We got some guys over the summer that are used to playing against those types of teams. We've always had a hard time to pick up some wins against them," said Therrien, referencing the addition of players like Shaw, Weber and Alexander Radulov. "It's a big challenge. We'll have to focus on taking things one game at a time. We didn't have a lot of success here last year, so it's a challenge for everyone."

Talking Gallant: Goaltender Al Montoya was one of several players who shared his thoughts on the firing of Florida Panthers head coach - and former Canadiens assistant coach - Gerard Gallant, who was relieved of his duties on Sunday. 

Montoya played two seasons under Gallant in South Florida, before joining the Canadiens during the offseason. News of Gallant's sudden departure caught him, like many others around the hockey world, by complete surprise.

"I couldn't believe it. Personally, he's one of the top coaches that I've ever played for. As a person, the players respected him. They wanted to play for him and they wanted to win for him every single night," shared the 31-year-old netminder, who clearly has a great deal of respect for his former bench boss. "I don't know too much of the business side, but I know as a coach and a player, that he's next to none there."

Video: Montoya on Gerard Gallant

Given Gallant's impressive body of work, Montoya is adamant that the man who led the Panthers to a regular-season franchise record 47 wins in 2015-16 - along with their second-ever division title and their first playoff appearance since 2011-12 - won't be out of a job for long.

"We'll see how it turns out," said Montoya. "Gerard is a guy who'll land on his feet wherever he goes."

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