The Montreal Canadiens look to get back on their winning ways on the road when they take on the struggling Washington Capitals on Tuesday, January 5th, 2009. The Canadiens had one 6 games from their 7 game road trip. The Habs scored 24 goals during that timeframe, but couldn't manage even 1 against a very good, but also recently struggling Ryan Miller. While they are currently in 7th place in the Eastern Conference, they have played 3 games more than the 3 teams looking to catch them in the standings.
Washington has lost every game since they traded their captain Chris Clark and another player for Jason Chimura. Chimura has only played in 2 games so far, with 1 assist. The Capitals have lost their last 3 games, and have been outscored 13-6. Ovechkin "only" has 1 goal and 2 assists in those 3 games, and is a -2.
Washington's best goaltender, Semyon Varlamov, is currently on a conditioning assignment in the AHL, which is good news for the Habs.
This will be the 3rd meeting between the Capitals and the Canadiens, with the Habs having won their first game in Washington, and then losing in OT (Shoot Out) at the Bell Center. Carey Price was the goaltender for both games.
Neither of the Kostitsyn brothers are expected to be in the lineup, since they did not practice today. Ryan O'Byrne has left the team for "personal reasons", and is back home in B.C.