The Canadiens held an optional practice Friday morning in Washington as they prepared to face Alex Ovechkin and the Capitals Friday night (7 p.m., TSN, RDS, TSN Radio 690).
Backup goalie Peter Budaj will start for the Canadiens and Francis Bouillon will be a healthy scratch on defence, making room for Douglas Murray. Forward Rene Bourque will also miss the game with a lower-body injury.
Coach Michel Therrien explained that he didn’t want to keep Murray, who has been a healthy scratch, on the shelf for too long and added that at age 38 Bouillon needs some time off when there are back-to-back games.
“We have seven healthy defencemen and I don’t want to leave a guy like Douglas Murray off the ice too long,” Therrien told reporters in Washington. “It’s a discussion we’ve had since (Alexei) Emelin returned to the lineup. At 38 years of age, we have to keep in mind that the season is a long one. Bouillon will be in the lineup tomorrow.”
The Canadiens will face Sidney Crosby and the Pittsburgh Penguins Saturday night at the Bell Centre (7 p.m., CBC, RDS, TSN Radio 690). Carey Price will start in goal against the Penguins.
Here’s how the lines and defence pairings should look against the Capitals Friday night:
(Photo by Allen McInnis/The Gazette)