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Sabres at Canadiens preview

Price to make first start since Nov. 2, looks to help Montreal end five-game losing streak

by Sean Farrell / NHL.com Correspondent

SABRES (6-13-4) at CANADIENS (8-12-3)

7 p.m. ET; SN, TVA Sports, MSG-B, NHL.TV 

 

The Game

Montreal Canadiens goalie Carey Price will make his first start since Nov. 2, against the Buffalo Sabres at Bell Centre on Saturday.

Price missed the past 10 games because of a lower-body injury. Montreal, which went 4-4-2 without him, has lost five straight (0-3-2). 

Buffalo ended a seven-game losing streak (0-5-2) with a 3-1 win against the Edmonton Oilers on Friday.

 

Players to watch

Sabres center Jack Eichel has scored in consecutive games and has a three-game point streak (two goals, one assist).

Price is 3-7-1 with a 3.77 goals-against average and an .877 save percentage in 11 starts.

 

They said it

"It's just nice to get a win and play a complete game. That's how we've got to play. ... We'll take how we play and hopefully carry it into (Saturday) because that team's going to be hungry, obviously Carey Price is back, so we're going to need the same effort (Saturday)." -- Sabres forward Kyle Okposo

"I do look at the standings, that's part of our job, but at the same time I look at our team and what we need to do to win tonight more than go in there and say, 'Hey guys, they could be within a point of us.' I'd rather look at us moving up than talk about teams that are creeping up on us." -- Canadiens coach Claude Julien

 

Sabres projected lineup

Evander Kane -- Jack Eichel -- Jason Pominville

Benoit Pouliot -- Ryan O'Reilly -- Sam Reinhart

Jordan Nolan -- Jacob Josefson -- Kyle Okposo

Zemgus Girgensons -- Johan Larsson -- Kyle Criscuolo

Marco Scandella -- Rasmus Ristolainen

Jake McCabe -- Victor Antipin

Nathan Beaulieu -- Justin Falk

Chad Johnson

Robin Lehner

Scratched: Matt Moulson, Seth Griffith, Josh Gorges

Injured: Taylor Fedun (lower body), Matt Tennyson (foot), Zach Bogosian (lower body)

 

Canadiens projected lineup

Alex Galchenyuk -- Jonathan Drouin -- Paul Byron

Max Pacioretty -- Phillip Danault -- Andrew Shaw

Charles Hudon -- Tomas Plekanec -- Brendan Gallagher

Nicolas Deslauriers -- Jacob de la Rose -- Byron Froese

Karl Alzner -- Jeff Petry

Joe Morrow -- Jordie Benn

Victor Mete -- Jakub Jerabek

Carey Price

Antti Niemi

Scratched: Brandon Davidson

Injured: Shea Weber (lower body), Al Montoya (concussion), Artturi Lehkonen (lower body), Nikita Scherbak (knee), David Schlemko (hand), Ales Hemsky (concussion-like symptoms)

 

Status report

The Sabres did not hold a morning skate. ... Weber took part in the morning skate in Brossard, Quebec, but will miss his third straight game. ... Schlemko is on a conditioning assignment with Laval of the American Hockey League.

 

Stat pack

Kane has five points (two goals, three assists) during a four-game point streak, and 10 points (five goals, five assists) in his past nine games. ... Pacioretty has no points in his past five games following 10 points (five goals, five assists) in eight games. ... Drouin has one goal in his past 16 games. ... The Sabres (2.39 goals-per game) and Canadiens (2.30 goals-per game) rank 30th and 31st in the League in scoring.

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