Carey Price: in or out against Senators?
Published Friday, March 14, 2014 3:52PM EDT
Last Updated Friday, March 14, 2014 7:00PM EDT
Carey Price was the first on and last off the ice Friday at the Habs' training centre in Brossard Friday, staying 30 minutes more than his teammates in the hour-long practice session, but whether he’ll play or not Saturday against the Senators (28-25-12) remains a mystery.
“It was a great day for Carey, he had a great workout,” said Coach Michel Therrien. “His health is being assessed on a daily basis and we’ll see how it goes tomorrow but I can’t say anything more for now. One thing is sure, since the Olympics he has worked extremely hard to return to the game as soon as possible. He is behaving like a leader, a true professional.”
Backup netminders Peter Budaj and Dustin Tokarski practiced at the other end of the rink but Therrien wouldn’t divulge which - if either- would start against the Sens.
However Therrien reserved some extra praise for Tokarski.
“Dustin gave us a great game in Anaheim, he fought hard. In Peter's case, he had good moments and others which he’d like to take back.”
The Canadiens (35-25-7) have now lost three straight and hold a mere four point lead over the Philadelphia Flyers, a team which also holds two games in hand.
P.K. Subban said that it’s time to bear down. “Every game and every weekend is huge until the end,” he said. “All teams will be raising their level a notch. There’s a lot of hockey to play and we have to give everything in the stretch.”
Therrien was mixing his lines in practice Friday in hopes of sparking an offence that has only scored seven goals in its last five games and only once in its last 21 power play attempts.
The Habs hope to reignite their goal-scoring against an Ottawa team that has allowed 43 more goals than the Habs, for the second-worst goals against average in the conference, ahead only of New York Islanders.
Thomas Vanek was on the right side alongside David Desharnais and Max Pacioretty, a line that will likely get first-line powerplay duties along with Subban and Andrei Markov on defence.
Danny Briere was riding shotgun with Tomas Plekanec and Brian Gionta while the EGG line, of Brendan Gallagher, Alex Galchenyuk and Lars Eller was back in hopes of duplicating its early season success and Travis Moen, Brendan Prust and Dale Weise made up the fourth line.
Michaël Bournival participated in his first full practice with his teammates since suffering a concussion on Feb. 6 against the Vancouver Canucks.
-With a file from The Canadian Press