BROSSARD - The Canadiens skated at the Bell Sports Complex on Thursday morning in preparation for their game against the Carolina Hurricanes at the Bell Centre.
- Injured Habs Brian Flynn and Nathan Beaulieu were the only two players absent from practice.
- The team worked on the power play for the opening 20 minutes of practice, before moving on to split drills.
- Although there were no line drills, it was confirmed that Charles Hudon will be back in the lineup in place of Daniel Carr against Carolina. Greg Pateryn and Mark Barberio will also be in uniform.
- Barberio, who was called up from the St. John's IceCaps on Wednesday, returns to Montreal for the first time since training camp.
The 26-year-old racked up two goals and eight assists over 30 games to end the season last year, and intends to pick up where he left off.
"I want to come with the same approach I had when I was called up last year. I play a fast puck-moving game, and I'm going to make sure I have a good position in the D-zone," underlined Barberio, who got the call from the Habs while he was already asleep on Tuesday night, finding out the news at 7:00 a.m. on Wednesday morning. "The fact that I went through this process last year gave me some confidence to say, 'Okay, I've already done this before, now I've got to go out and do it again.' I made sure my attitude was right and continued doing the right things until I got another shot."Video: Barberio on being back in Montreal
With that kind of approach to the game, the Montreal native is a welcome addition to the lineup for Canadiens captain Max Pacioretty.
"He's just such a good player, I'm happy to see him here," shared the 28-year-old American. "He just steps in and plays his game. He's not someone who ever feels he deserves more or whatnot. He just comes in and goes about his business in the right way, and guys respect him for that."
Indeed, Barberio has already impressed some of his new teammates before even making his 2016-17 debut.
"I think he's got a killer moustache," cracked Pacioretty post practice. "His moustache blows the doors off of [Andrew] Shaw's. It's not even close."
Barberio is one of a number of Habs sporting 'staches this month to raise awareness for men's health issues as part of the Movember movement.
"I've been getting a lot of comments about it -- the guys seem to like it," added the 6-foot-1 rearguard with a laugh. "Only one week left though, and then this duster can go. It's been a long November."
- While Barberio gets set to play his first game with the Habs this season, a former teammate of his in St. John's will prep for his third.
Returning to the lineup for the first time since being held scoreless in a 2-1 win against Toronto on Saturday, Hudon is still getting acclimatized to life as a youngster in the NHL.Video: Hudon on returning to the lineup
"Playing in the American League, I'm used to being in uniform every night. But we're all hockey players, so I need to learn to adapt, whether I'm playing or not," acknowledged the 22-year-old forward, who since making his Canadiens debut a season ago, has three points in five career games with the Habs. "For me, every time I hop onto the ice -- whether it's at practice or for a game -- I always give 100%. There are always going to be changes to the lineup, so I just need to come out with a solid effort."
- A solid effort will have to be in the cards for the Habs on Thursday, as they face a Hurricanes team which has won five-straight, including last Friday against Montreal in Raleigh.
"When a team's hot, you want to make sure you play the right way -- at least to start the game to make it hard on them," continued Pacioretty, who has 20 points in 21 career games against Carolina. "I'm not really surprised [by their success], because they're a hard-working team. I think they're pretty good on the penalty kill too, and they get a lot momentum from that -- it carries over. If you play with that penalty kill mentality the whole game, it's really hard to play against."Video: Pacioretty on facing a hot Carolina team
The Hurricanes boast a league-best 91.8% efficiency on the penalty kill, and have not allowed a goal when down a man during the month of November, setting up an interesting match-up against Montreal's fifth-best power play.
"They're quick on pucks and resilient -- you saw against us, we kept them out of our end, and then in the third period they showed up. It will be a good test for us tonight."
- Carey Price will get the start in goal for the Habs, facing the Hurricanes for the first time since a 4-0 shutout win on March 19, 2015.
- Game time is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. and will be broadcast on SN360 and RDS.