BROSSARD - Following Tuesday night's 3-2 win over the Boston Bruins, the Canadiens were back at practice at the Bell Sports Complex in Brossard on Wednesday.
- All players were present and accounted for at practice, except for Artturi Lehkonen and Zach Redmond, both of whom are sidelined due to injury. The Canadiens will be back in action on Thursday night against the Los Angeles Kings at the Bell Centre.
- Head coach Michel Therrien made a few adjustments up front on Tuesday, as Phillip Danault rotated with David Desharnais at center on the Canadiens' third line alongside Max Pacioretty and Andrew Shaw. For his part, Daniel Carr took Danault's spot on the fourth line with Torrey Mitchell and Brian Flynn.
- Therrien featured Sven Andrighetto on the second line with Tomas Plekanec and Brendan Gallagher, while the Canadiens' top line of Paul Byron, Alex Galchenyuk and Alexander Radulov remained intact.
- During his post-practice press conference, Therrien indicated that he hasn't yet decided if any of the aforementioned line changes will stick for Thursday night's tilt. He did confirm, however, that Carey Price would get the start in goal in the Canadiens' 14th game of the season.
- The Canadiens' bench boss upped the intensity level during the latter part of Tuesday's on-ice session by having his troops take part in an assortment of battle drills along the boards and in front of the net.
"It was fun. I think we enjoy those as players. I don't think we were smiling because we were a little tired," cracked Gallagher. "Coach let them go for a little while. We got a lot of battles in, and I think we were just catching our breath."
Mitchell believes it was a good exercise given the Canadiens' recent string of performances in which they've been outplayed at certain points in games.
"We've been leaning on our goalie too much. I don't think we've been playing really good hockey in front of him," admitted Mitchell. "Today was an intense practice day, so it was good for us."
- Following practice, Desharnais talked about his recent struggles on offense. The eight-year NHL veteran has been held without a point over the last nine games. Needless to say, he knows he has to start producing points again in order to remain in the lineup on a consistent basis.
"I have to be better. I'm responsible for my own actions. The stats have always spoken for themselves, so if I don't have any points, it will definitely be tough to stay in the lineup," said Desharnais, who has two goals and four points in 13 games so far this season. "I need to roll up my sleeves, work harder and force them to put me out there. If I want to play, I need to do more."
Video: David Desharnais on being held off the scoresheet
- Al Montoya addressed the media on Tuesday morning for the first time since his start in Columbus last Friday night. Over the last few days, the 31-year-old netminder has had an opportunity to refocus and put the 10-0 defeat at Nationwide Arena behind him.
"When you sign up for this position, you kind of know. Even as a goaltender, you're the last line of defense. Forward makes a mistake, D-man makes a mistake, once the goalie makes a mistake, everyone sees it. I'm here for that. I'm here for the good. I'm here for the bad. I think it only makes me stronger," shared Montoya, who is eagerly anticipating the opportunity to get back between the pipes soon. "I'm excited. I'm looking forward to it. I'm looking forward to getting another shot at it. It was a tough game. I've moved on from that."
Video: Al Montoya on his mindset following the loss in Ohio
- Earlier in the day, it was announced that Les Canadiennes de Montreal would play a regular season game at the Bell Centre, on Saturday, December 10, against the Calgary Inferno. The matinee game will mark the first time the two teams will meet since facing off against each other in the 2016 Clarkson Cup championship at the Canadian Tire Centre in Ottawa last March.
"I think it's quite exciting to be playing at the Bell Centre where the Habs are playing. We've had a partnership with the Canadiens, so being able to be there, play there, I think it's going to be really exciting. It's a dream come true for all of us," said Les Canadiennes captain and two-time Olympic gold-medalist Marie-Philip Poulin. "I think it's a big step towards the growth of women's hockey. We're hoping the fans are going to come out and watch. We're hoping little kids come and watch, too. Maybe they'll dream of playing for Les Canadiennes at the Bell Centre. Why not?"
Puck drop is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. Tickets will be sold for $15 each and will be available for purchase as of Friday, November 11, at 1 p.m. on canadiens.com.
Video: Marie-Philip Poulin on playing at the Bell Centre
Lines and D pairings at practice:
Byron - Galchenyuk - Radulov
Andrighetto - Plekanec - Gallagher
Pacioretty - Danault/Desharnais - Shaw
Carr - Mitchell - Flynn
Emelin - Weber
Markov - Petry
Beaulieu - Pateryn