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Game Day - Devils - February 7

by Staff Writer / Montréal Canadiens

- The Canadiens practiced at the Bell Sports Complex in Brossard on Saturday ahead of hosting the visiting New Jersey Devils at the Bell Centre.

- Absent from practice on Friday, Brandon Prust was back on the ice with his teammates on Saturday and should be in uniform against the Devils.

- Inactive since Tuesday, the Habs will have fresh legs opposite a Devils team which arrives in Montreal having hosted the Toronto Maple Leafs the night prior -- a fact the home team would like to take advantage of to snap a two-game slide.

“Obviously whenever you’re playing a back-to-back you’re going to be a little more tired, so it’s up to us to come out strong and make their night a long one. We lost our last two, so we want to get back on the right track to start our own two-game set this weekend,” underlined David Desharnais, who heads into Saturday's contest reunited with former linemate Max Pacioretty and Dale Weise.

Having seen his team score just six goals over the last four games, the personnel change comes as head coach Michel Therrien searches for a spark on offense.

“We had success in the past but eventually we became predictable,” admitted Pacioretty, who had been playing with Tomas Plekanec since mid-January. “Since we’ve been separated, Davey’s started taking more shots at net, which should make us less predictable. Plus Weise is a guy who can play on any line with success. He’s a guy everyone likes playing with, so Davey and I are looking forward to it tonight.”

- Despite the most recent pair of 3-2 losses to the Coyotes and Sabres, the Habs have only dropped three in a row in regulation time once this season, during the team’s early-December western American road trip. Keeping that stat intact will be a focal point for the team on Saturday.

“As soon as you lose you want to bounce back and that desire doubles when you lose two in a row. You don’t want to get into a streak because you can start developing some bad habits and the longer it goes on the harder it is to get out of. Snapping out of it tonight is all we’re focusing on,” assured forward Brendan Gallagher, who picked up an assist last Sunday against Arizona. “We’re not worrying about the past or how we played. We know that we can do better so it’s just a matter of going out there, playing one good game and coming away with points."

- Carey Price will face Keith Kinkaid in goal for a second time this season on Saturday. The two netminders went head-to-head previously on January 2 at the Prudential Center, a game Montreal won 4-2.

- Puck drop is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. on TVA Sports and City Montreal.
 

Offensive lines and defensive pairings at practice:

 
Pacioretty-Desharnais-Weise

Galchenyuk-Plekanec-Gallagher

De La Rose-Eller-Thomas

Prust-Dumont-Sekac

Bournival-Malhotra

 
Markov-Subban

Beaulieu-Gonchar

Emelin-Gilbert

Weaver

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