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At the Rink: Devils at Canadiens

by Sean Farrell

MONTREAL -- A lower-body injury will keep New Jersey Devils defenseman David Schlemko out of the lineup against the Montreal Canadiens at Bell Centre on Wednesday.

Coach John Hynes ruled Schlemko out after the Devils' optional morning skate.

"Not too concerned with him," Hynes said. "He's not going to go [Wednesday] but it's just a situation where it's a precautionary thing for him."

Forward Mike Cammalleri, New Jersey's leading scorer, did not make the trip to Montreal and will miss his third straight game because of an upper-body injury.

"It's a challenge. Every team faces it," Hynes said. "You have to be able to overcome injuries, and for us, we feel like we have a real quality group of players. So when you miss a guy like Mike, he plays big minutes, so it's not having one player step in those minutes, we have to make sure that our team and several players step in the minutes that he plays and have a consistent group throughout our whole lineup."

Montreal did not have a morning skate after a 4-3 loss at the Philadelphia Flyers on Tuesday.

The Canadiens, who haven't played at home since Dec. 17, went 2-6-0 while playing their past eight games on the road.

"They've got a really good team," Devils forward Lee Stempniak said. "I think getting [Brendan] Gallagher back, he's a big part of their team. He plays hard, it seems he's got energy that the rest of the team feeds off so that's a big boost for them.

"I think missing Carey Price, one of the best goalies in the world, hurts them but they've got a good team. You look through their lineup, they've got a lot of guys that are fast and play hard and are capable of scoring a lot of goals, and P.K. [Subban] on the back end, he's a pretty dynamic player as well, so for us it's a big test. Anyone can beat anyone, I know that's a cliché, and to me they're still a very dangerous team."

Here are the projected lineups:

DEVILS

Jiri Tlusty - Travis Zajac - Kyle Palmieri

Tyler Kennedy - Adam Henrique - Lee Stempniak

Stefan Matteau - Sergey Kalinin - Tuomo Ruutu

Bobby Farnham - Stephen Gionta - Jordin Tootoo

Andy Greene - Adam Larsson

John Moore - Eric Gelinas

Jon Merrill - Damon Severson

Cory Schneider

Keith Kinkaid

Injured: Patrik Elias (knee), Jacob Josefson (lower body), Mike Cammalleri (upper body), David Schlemko (lower body)

Scratched: Mike Sislo

CANADIENS

Max Pacioretty - Tomas Plekanec - Brendan Gallagher

Lars Eller - Alex Galchenyuk - Daniel Carr

Paul Byron - David Desharnais - Sven Andrighetto

Devante Smith-Pelly - Torrey Mitchell - Brian Flynn

Nathan Beaulieu - P.K. Subban

Andrei Markov - Jeff Petry

Alexei Emelin - Mark Barberio

Mike Condon

Ben Scrivens

Injured: Carey Price (lower body), Dale Weise (upper body), Tom Gilbert (lower body)

Scratched: Greg Pateryn, Jarred Tinordi, Tomas Fleischmann

Status report: Hynes said he would likely make some changes to his defense pairs. Gelinas was a healthy scratch for the past four games. "We think he's a valuable part of our team and there's got to be a little bit more consistency to his game to be an everyday guy," Hynes said. … Andrighetto will play in place of Fleischmann, who will be a healthy scratch for the first time.

Who's hot: Schneider has allowed three goals in his past three games. … Palmieri has four goals and one assist in his past six games. … Gallagher has two goals and one assist in two games since returning to the lineup after missing 17 games because of two fractured fingers on his left hand.

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