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Habs can't solve Hasek

by Staff Writer / Montréal Canadiens

The Canadiens were shut out for just the second time this season on Monday against the Red Wings.

DETROIT (AP) -- Dominik Hasek had every right to be motivated by an All-Star snub. He insisted he wasn't.

Hasek made 23 saves to earn his sixth shutout this season and 74th career in the Detroit Red Wings' 2-0 win over the Montreal Canadiens on Monday night.

Jiri Hudler, and Pavel Datsyuk scored for Detroit, which won its fourth straight.

Hasek, who leads the NHL with a 1.98 goals-against average, is one shutout behind New Jersey's Martin Brodeur for tops in the league. But that wasn't enough to earn a spot on the Western Conference All-Star team.

Vancouver's Roberto Luongo was elected to start in fan balloting. Calgary's Miikka Kiprusoff, and Dallas' Marty Turco were selected as reserves on Saturday.

"I don't feel that way," said Hasek, brushing off suggestions that he was more determined on Monday. "I was rested because Ozzy (Chris Osgood) played the last game at home."

But being left off the team still stung the 41-year-old veteran of 15 NHL seasons, who has played in six All-Star games.

"I believe I deserved to be there," Hasek said. "For me, it's over now. I want to stay focused for the rest of the season. I didn't come back to Detroit to play in the All-Star game."

And the Red Wings don't mind that Hasek, who has had a history of groin problems, can use the break to rest.

"We've got a lot of confidence with him in net," Detroit coach Mike Babcock said.

David Aebischer made 37 saves for Montreal.

"They played pretty good defensively," Canadiens forward Michael Ryder said. "And we couldn't get anything to the net or by Hasek."

Detroit defenseman Chris Chelios played in his 1,515th NHL game and moved past former Red Wings captain Steve Yzerman into 10th place on the career list. Yzerman retired after last season, his 22nd -- all with Detroit -- and had his jersey retired on Jan. 2.

The Red Wings took a 1-0 lead 9:18 in on Hudler's seventh goal. He beat Aebischer with a slap shot from the top of the left circle, high on the far side.

"I was going to pass it, but the defenseman backed up and went to the middle," Hudler said. "And I just took a couple of steps and shot ... I tried to pick the top corner, and wanted to get it away fast."

Datsyuk added his 13th goal, when his shot from deep along the right boards got between Aebischer's arm and body.

"I think we were tentative," Montreal coach Guy Carbonneau said. "We knew it was a big game, but we were tentative."

Notes: Hasek is ninth on the career shutout list. ... Montreal and Detroit last played on Oct. 20, 2003. ... Montreal D Mathieu Dandenault played in Detroit for the first time since signing with Montreal in August 2005. He played nine seasons with the Red Wings (1995-2004), helping the team win three Stanley Cups. ... Detroit D Mathieu Schneider missed his fourth game with a strained knee ligament.

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