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Beaulieu in, Emelin out

Julien confirms change on back end against Ottawa on Saturday

by Steven Nechay @CanadiensMTL / canadiens.com

KANATA -- Nathan Beaulieu returns to the lineup on Saturday to face the Sens after sitting out Tuesday's game against Chicago.

Claude Julien confirmed that Beaulieu will replace Alexei Emelin, who will sit out as a healthy scratch.

"We're making a rotation," explained the Habs bench boss. "It's going to be important to keep mixing things up until the end of the season."

Aside from on defense, the rest of the lineup will remain untouched in Ottawa.

Video: Claude Julien on Saturday's lineup changes

Saturday's projected forward lines and defensive pairing are thus as follows:

Pacioretty-Galchenyuk-Radulov
Byron-Plekanec-Gallagher
Lehkonen-Danault-Shaw
King-Ott-Mitchell

Markov-Weber
Davidson-Petry
Beaulieu-Benn

  

PRACTICE NOTEBOOK

- Saturday's morning skate in Ottawa was an optional one. Carey Price, Shea Weber, Jamie Benn, Paul Byron, Torrey Mitchell and Andrew Shaw were the players who did not practice, as well as injured Habs Nikita Nesterov and Brian Flynn.

- Despite the storylines surrounding Montreal and Ottawa -- three games in the next seven days, one-point separating the clubs in the standings -- the two teams have not actually met in nearly four months.

Nevertheless, according to Brendan Gallagher, getting reacquainted with some rough stuff should take no time at all.

"It'll probably happen on the first shift, to be honest. It's one of those things where we've played playoff series against them, and there's usually a bit of yapping that happens early on in these types of games," described the gritty forward, who has racked up six career points against the Sens. "Both teams want to make their stamp, and control the style and pace of game that will be played. [...] Everyone's aware of the schedule -- we have three games against these guys in the next week or so -- so I expect that the first period to be a physical one, and then things will settle in."

But while there may be no love lost between the Canadiens and Senators this weekend, the same can't be said about the intensity level.

"It's fun, it's kind of why you play the game," added the 24-year-old. "These are the moments that test you as an athlete, and that's certainly the case here tonight. We're going to play a lot of big games here down the stretch, but one against a team that we've had that rivalry with in the past -- one that we're so close to in the standings -- it should be fun."

Video: Gallagher on an intense matchup to come

- Carey Price will get the start in goal against former teammate Mike Condon. Price holds a career 17-8-4 record against the Sens, with a 0.917 save percentage, and a 2.45 goals against average.

- Game time is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. at the Canadian Tire Centre in Ottawa, and will be broadcast on Sportsnet and TVA Sports in Canada.

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