Defencemen Alexei Emelin and Raphael Diaz (photo above) will be healthy scratches when the Canadiens take on the Penguins Wednesday night in Pittsburgh (7 p.m., TSN, RDS, TSN Radio 690).
Coach Michel Therrien made the announcement after Wednesday’s morning skate. David Desharnais, who is battling the flu, didn’t take part in the morning skate but is expected to play.
Forward Louis Leblanc and defenceman Nathan Beaulieu, both called up from Hamilton, will be in the lineup for the Canadiens. Leblanc will be on a line with Travis Moen and Michael Bournival, while Beaulieu will be paired with Josh Gorges.
“It’s still just a game, but playing against the Penguins is special,” Leblanc told reporters in Pittsburgh after the morning skate. “They have some great players over there. I’m excited. The coach hasn’t given me any special directions or anything, but I’ll just go out there and do whatever they ask of me. I’ve improved my game both offensively and defensively in Hamilton and I’ve been given more and more responsibility on the ice. The coaches are happy with my game. I’ve earned a chance to be here tonight and it will be another test for me.”
After Wednesday’s game, the Canadiens travel to Detroit, where they will face the Red Wings Friday night. Alex Ovechkin and the Washington Capitals will visit the Bell Centre Saturday night.