Budaj will start in goal against Penguins

The Canadiens, coming off an embarrassing 7-3 loss to the Philadephia Flyers Monday night at the Bell Centre, held an up-tempo practice in Brossard Tuesday morning before flying to Pittsburgh, where they will face the Penguins Wednesday night (7 p.m., TSN, RDS, TSN Radio 690).

Coach Michel Therrien announced that Peter Budaj will start in goal against the Penguins after replacing Carey Price in each of the last two games. During his last two starts – a 5-1 loss in Toronto Saturday and Monday’s loss to the Flyers – Price has allowed 9 goals on 33 shots.

Price has a 19-10-4 record with a 2.50 goals-against average and a .906 save percentage. He ranks 21st in the NHL in GAA and 29th in save percentage. Budaj has a 7-1-1 record with a 2.19 GAA and .915 save percentage.

Price will start Thursday night when the Tampa Bay Lightning visits the Bell Centre (7:30 p.m., TSN-HABS, RDS, TSN Radio 690).

Brandon Prust, who sat out Monday’s game after appearing to reinjure his shoulder during Saturday’s loss in Toronto, was on the ice at practice Tuesday and is expected to be in the lineup against the Penguins. Prust would most likely take the spot of Ryan White, who faces an NHL disciplinary hearing after an illegal check to the head of the Flyers’ Kent Huskins. 

Michael Ryder took a therapy day Tuesday, while Raphael Diaz, who has been sidelined since Feb. 25 with a concussion, skated while wearing a no-contact jersey.

Therrien said there’s a possibility that defenceman Yannick Weber could return to the lineup in Pittsburgh.

“It’ll be a game-time decision,” the coach said after practice.

The lines at practice were: Bourque-Plekanec-Gionta; Blunden-Halpern-Moen; Gallagher-Desharnais-Pacioretty; Galchenyuk-Eller-Prust; Dumont-White

Defence pairings were: Subban-Gorges; Markov-Bouillon; Drewiske-Weber; Beaulieu-Kaberle; Diaz.

(Photo by Paul Chiasson/The Canadian Press)

Canadiens-Penguins Preview, nhl.com

Canadiens powerless against Flyers, by Pat Hickey

Canadiens outmatched in every way against Flyers, by Pat Hickey

Some fissures appearing as Canadiens limp to season’s finish line, by Dave Stubbs

White faces disciplinary hearing for hit on Huskins, nhl.com

Laviolette somber after Flyers’ win, philly.com

Habs vs. Flyers photo gallery

Crosby’s numbers still good enough for Hart Trophy, by Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Crosby skates with Penguins at practice, pittsburghpenguins.com

Iginla: The debut that almost wasn’t, pittsburghpenguins.com

Leafs inch closer to playoff spot, nhl.com


  1. Mick says:

    Let the Budaj worship begin!

  2. Loonie says:

    Just to put the whole Desharnais treatment v. Eller treatment thing into context for a moment.

    Eller had one bad game and was scratched for the next two.

    Desharnais’ been well below average for the majority of the season and has had one ten minute benching and one temporary demotion to the fourth line.

    If that doesn’t tell you EVERYTHING you need to know about this situation nothing will.

    • Steeltown Hab says:

      The handling of Desharnais/Eller by MT this year has been embarrassing.

      That extension makes zero hockey sense.

      Lars, PK, Galchenyuk, Pac, Emelin – @J_Perez22

  3. jedimyrmidon says:

    On RDS’s Antichambre, every single time Carey hits a rough patch, they always start questioning the notion of ‘giving Price the net’ as if he hasn’t earned it. They talk about giving him many starts to try and get him back into a groove as if he were undeserving.

    Funny. They never talk about DD in that context – and it applies so much more to him than Price since he has needed a kickstart for basically the whole season. They want to screw around with the psyche of the #1 goaltender, the single most visible position on the team, by ‘disciplining’ him for poor starts? But the idea that DD should be separated from Pacs or given less ice time/PP time without any mention of his non-existent defensive game is never, ever mentioned once?

    In other words, Price’s status as the netminder of the present and future is more in doubt in their minds than DD as the center given the best of every world on the team.

    • Loonie says:

      Price as you say is the most easily recognizable player on the team, so I wouldn’t expect them to make the correlation.

      But having said that, I watch the program two out of every three times it’s on television and I’ve never once seen a panel member say that Desharnais didn’t have a good game for reasons beyond the lack of productivity of his linemates.

      They’re on the front lines and he’s hidden in the back with the General.

      I’m beginning to think that Therrien feels about Desharnais as they do.

      It’s always been Pacioretty or Cole who had the bad game. Funny that they don’t think to mention that Desharnais is dependent on his linemates to have a good game but that the reverse has never been applicable.


    • jo_maka says:

      And this is really telling, given that the Montreal media are really pumping Carey’s tires. Whenever he let in a softie, the first order of business for them is to remind us that he’s really elite, you guys, like totes elite and stuff, he got like all of the elites’ elitey elite schtick. All while brushing off anything done by the renegade Subban who right now actually exhibits elite level of play, but that’s another story. So if they actually start questioning Carey’s netminding, that gives you an idea of how ridiculous is the cult like devotion that they have for DD
      Open-mindedness is not a skull fracture

  4. frontenac1 says:

    Weber? He played once this year and he stunk.Then he got hurt. Maybe he will be better next time,who knows. Send Nate back to Hamilton and bring back Tinordi.Sit DD and Moen for a few games and bring up Dumont and crazy Stortini for Mojo.

  5. Gazza Strip says:

    Haven’t made many comments of late but feel compelled to remind everyone that we are still having a much better year than any of us expected when the season began. The problem with the success we’ve had so far is that it got us very excited about visions of Lord Stanley coming back to town in the near future. Well, that may still be the case, but anyone who has ever played sports knows that sometimes a team goes into a funk. Sometimes it’s bad bounces, sometimes it’s playing against a hungrier team, etc.

    The only thing I can say is that I’ve had a great year watching the games and while it might have been nice to get some help at the trade deadline, we didn’t and we have what we have. That is a hard working young team with a chance to get very good over the next few years. Pittsburgh didn’t get Crosby and Malkin because they were great. They got them because they sucked for a few years in a row. We only had to endure one year of suckage before we climbed back into the mix. Hell, Toronto… you don’t need me to continue do you?

    Let’s just enjoy the good, don’t jump off the bridge when we lose, and forget about the games against Philly and Toronto. I really hope and expect a much better effort against Pittsburgh tonight but if not, I won’t crap on everyone with a CH on their chest.
    And yes, my glass is always half full.
    Sometimes with optimism too.

  6. habfanacrossthed says:

    Our recent struggles and lack of play is summed up into one thing; players don’t want to get hurt. This shortened season combined with the potential of many games in the playoffs. Players understand the grind, and wear and tear. What’s demanded of them. Just wish MT would shake up things and move Desharnais and Gionta.

    GHOD – Go Habs Or Die

  7. j2w4habs25 says:

    we lose this one then sh*t hits the fan.. it may be 3 games but knowing Montreal fans can get a bit to serious early

    Boston will be playing with emotions high and lets only hope Buffalo pulls a huge win tonight, same for HABS.

    Carey Price #31

  8. Small_Town_Boy says:

    @ The Dude: Price will be starting the playoffs. How well they do will be based upon the team in front of him.

  9. Habfan10912 says:

    I am probably in the minority but I am glad Weber is getting a shot. He played pretty solid for us in the play offs two seasons ago. I hope he isn’t too rusty. Budaj gets the start tonight. Price tomorrow?

    • Cal says:

      Hi Jim. Weber should have been moved long ago, yet no other team wanted him. Despite what he did against Boston 2 seasons ago, I would have let him walk. Habs have too many too small players these days.

      • Les-Habitants says:

        I think it’s good for him to get a look. Bealieu has played well, but he is still in his 1st year as a pro. Weber has great offensive instincts, and tore up the AHL, and has NHL playoff experience. In case we need him, it’s good for him to get some game action now.

        After the last 2 losses, they also needed to do something to the roster.

    • frontenac1 says:

      Hey Amigo! How”s the Worm Ranching going? There is a lad down the road selling worms for $3 a dozen. Depending on how fast they breed,that”s a pretty good business eh? Saludos!

  10. habsguru says:

    need to give some therapy days to 79, 26, 14, and 31. 76 could handle playing twice a day. will be a little easier to do when the playoff seeding is more appearant.

  11. commandant says:

    #8 on the board is Russian Phenom, Valeri Nichushkin along with a discussion of why he was downgraded for the “Russian Factor”


    Mitch asks how many outdoor games is too many


    Go Habs Go!
    Your 2013 NHL Draft Headquarters, Now Open.

    • bwoar says:

      Sounds like Andrei Kostitsyn part two. Heh.


    • jo_maka says:

      Weird that TSN’s Drafcentre has him at #2 after Seth Jones, what with the russian factor and all. A lot of analysts seem to think that he is the most talented forward in this class.

      Wishful thinking as always, but I hope that he slides far enough, way below Forsberg’s level, so we can snatch him. Or we can trade up, whatever. When our number is up, if the kid we get is junior aged and not a top tier quality, we can’t have him right away anyways so who cares if he plays in Russia for a moment. Been good for Emelin.
      Open-mindedness is not a skull fracture

  12. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …so,a total of 6 outdoor games next season

    …New Year’s Classic, Ann Arbour (Detroit & da Weeds); 2 games in Yankee Stadium (vs Devils, the Islanders; Vancouver, in Vancouver (actually it’s ‘inside’ at Rogers Stadium) vs Otttawa; Pittsburg & Chicago; and Ducks & Kings in Dodger Stadium (bring suntan lotion)
    Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY

    Campaign to Retire Toe Blake’s Number 6 !!!

  13. Fergu27 says:

    Thanks sportsfan

  14. adamkennelly says:

    MT has his favorites – and Weber, Kaberle and White are not on the list.

    DD is. Moen is.

    Our D right now is suspect at best. Gorges has looked not great all year, Markov is putting up points but is slow and vulnerable defensively. Frankie is not offensive. I am not sure why Weber or Kaberle have not been used in offensive roles since Diaz went out but lets assume MT sees things in practice which help him make these decisions.

    I would call up Tinordi – send Beaulieu down, and use him/Weber/Kaberle depending on the opponent.

    • Cal says:

      Kaberle will not play again for the Habs. He will be bought out.
      Weber has never been good enough to play in the NHL as a Dman. If he was more gifted offensively, he could have been converted into a winger. Yet another small winger.
      Moen is 4th line playing 10 minutes. That is not the sign of a favourite player.
      Can’t disagree with you on DD, though. Mind you, he needs two big wingers and Gally ain’t one of them though he tries.

      • Chris says:

        “Weber has never been good enough to play in the NHL as a Dman. If he was more gifted offensively, he could have been converted into a winger. Yet another small winger.”


        I watched Yannick Weber play in Kitchener. He was every bit as dominant as P.K. Subban in that league.

        I watched Yannick Weber play in Hamilton. He was almost as good as P.K. Subban in that league.

        Weber has had short stints in the NHL. When he gets on a roll and is comfortable, he is absolutely good enough to play in the NHL.

        Your point is that he is too small. My rebuttal is that he is too small FOR MONTREAL, a team that is already too small. Put him on a different team, partnered with a defensive, stay-at-home type, and Weber can absolutely be an effective hockey player in the NHL.

        What Weber needs is a team and coaching staff that believes in him. He has not had that in Montreal.

        • Loonie says:

          Two things here. The first is that you’re absolutely correct when saying he hasn’t been given the opportunity.

          He really must be one of the worst practice players this team has seen over the last five years to have been crapped on this much.

          The second is that he wasn’t too small to lay Jody Shelley on his back last season.

          I’m also not in a position where I’m going to say that this organization makes its personnel decisions with the utmost integrity or objectivity.

          Weber needs ten consecutive games to show what he can do. By the time games seven through ten have been completed the team would have a pretty good idea of what they have in Weber.

          • Chris says:

            At 5’10” and 200 pounds, Weber has more than enough bulk and a nice, low centre of gravity, to be an effective NHL defenceman. He’s got a great shot, and he’s a good skater.

            He just doesn’t fit into the Habs’ plans. I would not be shocked at all to see he and the Habs agree to part ways this summer, and see him end up in New Jersey with his junior coach, Peter DeBoer. DeBoer LOVED Weber, and I’m sure he knows what Weber can and can’t do.

        • ebk says:

          Put that cup of Java down, sir and step back from the computer. Your caffeine quota has been surpassed.

          Kidding aside, I agree with you, he’s never been given a chance, think he’ll be a NHL D man before his days are done.

          • Chris says:

            I should emphasize I do not think he is as good as Subban. But he is far, far better than people think.

            I always felt that Montreal should have done everything possible to deal Yannick Weber instead of Ryan McDonagh. The Habs desperately needed McDonagh’s style of defence, while Weber was one of many (Subban, Markov, Weber) with the same skill-set. To this day, I still believe that swapping Weber and McDonagh would have got that Gomez trade completed, and both McDonagh and Weber would be in great situations to succeed.

        • Cal says:

          Big deal he dominated IN JUNIOR. Lots do.
          Weber is too small to play D in the NHL, period. He doesn’t hit; he swings his stick like an axe.
          Weber needs to play in Europe. In a league that is his caliber.

          • Loonie says:

            Weber hits Cal.

            Unfair knock on him.

          • Chris says:

            Brian Rafalski – 5’10”, 200 pounds

            Tobias Enstrom – 5’10”, 180 pounds

            John-Michael Liles – 5’10”, 185 pounds

            Kimmo Timonen – 5’10”, 194 pounds

            Lubomir Visnovsky – 5’10”, 197 pounds

            Alex Goligoski – 5’11”, 181 pounds

            Dan Boyle – 5’11”, 191 pounds

            Marek Zidlicky – 5’11”, 190 pounds

            Mark Streit – 5’11”, 191 pounds

            Stephane Robidas – 5’11”, 196 pounds

            Yannick Weber – 5’11”, 200 pounds

            All of the above players were smaller guys that play a similar style to Weber. All of them faced hurdles early in their careers regarding the size and ability to play in the NHL.

            All (except Rafalski, who couldn’t get his career going because of ridiculous viewpoints like yours that a 5’10” player is “too small to play NHL hockey”) are currently valuable contributors to their NHL teams. Weber is a very talented kid with some great attributes (powerful shot, good skater, good passer). He did not look at all out of place in his longer stints with the Habs.

            Young NHL players need to develop confidence to succeed. Weber hasn’t been able to do that in Montreal. I reiterate that his problem is not that he isn’t NHL calibre (he absolutely is), but that he was drafted by the wrong team.

          • Cal says:

            @Loon & Chris-

            He’s been with the Habs all this season and Weber has played what? A couple games? Get the feeling MT and JJ know what they have and it isn’t much?
            Boullion is the same size. He doesn’t play meek and small. That’s what Weber does.

          • Loonie says:

            Cal you’re giving them too much credit. They aren’t above making a mistake or mistakes.

            See Eller, Desharnais, Markov, Moen and White.

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