Game Day: Canadiens missing Shea Weber and David Schlemko in Carolina

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    RALEIGH, N.C.The Canadiens three-day Christmas break ended with an early alarm clock going off Wednesday morning.Teams normally arrive in a road city the night before a game, but because there is no travel allowed on Boxing Day during the Christmas break as part of the NHL collective bargaining agreement, the Canadiens had a 930 a.m. flight out of Montreal Wednesday and were scheduled to arrive at the Raleigh Airport at 1140 a.m. That would give the players time to take a pre-game nap before catching a 430 p.m. bus from their hotel to PNC Arena before facing the Hurricanes .Shea Weber didnt have to worry about setting his alarm because the Canadiens defencemen isnt making the three-game road trip because of a foot injury. That means Weber will miss Wednesday game in Carolina, Thursday game in Tampa and Saturday game in Florida. Weber, who has 6-10-16 totals in 26 games and is minus-8, has missed the last three games with the foot injury.Defenceman David Schlemko also didnt make the trip because of the flu and neither did forward Ales Hemsky or backup goalie Al Montoya, who both remain out indefinitely with concussions.When coach Claude Julien met with the media a couple of hours before the game he noted that quite a few players on the Canadiens are battling the flu but and that his final lineup would have to be a game-time decision. The Canadiens only have 20 players on the tripmeaning there are only two spares.The Canadiens called up defenceman Brett Lernout from the AHL Laval Rocket on Wednesday morning and he will be on the road trip. Lernout was also called up last week and struggled during the Canadiens 4-1 loss to the Oilers Saturday night in Edmonton. He was returned to Laval after the game before getting called back no doubt wee seen him play better,” Julien said about Lernout performance in Edmonton. e had a tough night … he knows that Tom Kuhnhackl Jersey, we all know that. At the same time, I think everybody happens to have a tough night at some point. But for him in his first game, probably not what he was looking for. We know he better than that. He played with us before and I think he handled himself well. So it just a matter of him going out there … sometimes you say park it, put it aside … well Brian Dumoulin Jersey, that what they got to do. They got to put that aside … he got to put it aside and move on here, and if he in the lineup he got to be ready to play and play well.”Carey Price, who was given the night off in Edmonton, will be back in goal for the Canadiens against the Hurricanes. Price has an 11-10-2 record this season with a 3.04 goals-against average and a .904 save percentage. He ranks 36th in the NHL in goals-against average and 36th in save percentage. Julien said before the game that he hasnt decided who his starting goalie will be Thursday night in Tampa.This will be the first of three meetings between the Canadiens and Hurricanes this season. They will meet again on Jan. 25 at the Bell Centre and on Feb. 1 in Carolina. The Hurricanes won the season series with a 2-1-0 record last season.Where they standThe Canadiens come into the game in fourth place in the Atlantic Division, seven points behind third-place Boston for the final playoff spot in the division with the Bruins holding two games in hand. The Bruins play host to the Ottawa Senators Wednesday night .The Hurricanes are in sixth place in the Metropolitan Division and are three points ahead of the Canadiens in the battle for the final wild-card playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, which is currently held by the New York Islanders . The Canadiens are six points behind the Islanders.The Hurricanes beat the Buffalo Sabres 4-2 in their last game before the Christmas break and are 5-1-0 in their last six games. The Hurricanes are also 4-0-0 in their last four home games.Canadiens numbersPhillip Danault leads the Canadiens in scoring with 7-14-21 totals, but only ranks 134th on the NHL scoring list. Danault is followed on the Canadiens in scoring by Brendan Gallagher , Max Pacioretty , Alex Galchenyuk , Andrew Shaw and Jonathan Drouin .Tomas Plekanec, who has 4-12-16 totals this season, has 11-26-37 totals in 42 career games against the Hurricanes.Nicolas Deslauriers leads the Canadiens in plus minus at plus-10 with 4-3-7 totals in 17 games since getting called up from the Laval Rocket. Defenceman Jeff Petry has the worst plus minus on the Canadiens at minus-17, while Galchenyuk and Drouin are both minus-14.The Canadiens rank 25th in the NHL in offence, scoring an average of 2.69 goals per game, and rank 22nd in defence, allowing an average of 3.14 goals per game. They rank 19th on the power play and 28th in penalty-killing .Hurricanes numbersTeuvo Teravainen leads the Hurricanes in scoring with 8-20-28 totals, followed by Jeff Skinner , Sebastian Aho , Justin Williams and Jordan Staal . Skinner has a four-game points streak with 1-4-5 totals during that span, and has 10-6-16 totals in 22 career games against the Canadiens.Staal will play in his 800th career NHL game Wednesday night, becoming only the second player from the 2006 NHL Draft class to reach that mark, following the Pittsburgh Penguins Phil Kessel, who has played 869 games. The Penguins selected Staal with the No. 2 overall pick at the 2006 draft, while the Boston Bruins took Kessel fifth overall Riley Sheahan Jersey.In his last nine games since Nov. 10, Hurricanes goalie Cam Ward has a 7-0-1 record with a 2.59 goals-against average and a .911 save percentage. For the season, Ward has an 8-2-1 record with a 2.79 goals-against average and a .911 save percentage. Ward is one of only six active NHL goalies to record 300 career wins, along with Roberto Luongo, Henrik Lundqvist, Marc-Andreacute; Fleury, Ryan Miller and Kari Lehtonen.The Hurricanes rank 23rd in the NHL in offence, scoring an average of 2.74 goals per game, and rank 20th in defence, allowing an average of 3.03 goals per game. The rank 27th on the power play and 27th in penalty-killing .Mete shines at world juniorsDefenceman Victor Mete, who the Canadiens loaned to Team Canada for the World Junior Hockey Championship in Buffalo, had two assists and was named Canada player of the game in a 4-2 win over Finland Tuesday in the tournament opener.The Canadiens have two other prospects playing at the world junior tournament. Ryan Poehling, the Canadiens first-round pick at this year NHL Draft, is a centre with Team USA, while Joni Ikonen, a second-round draft pick this year is a centre with Team Finland.   What next?The Canadiens will head to the Raleigh airport and fly to Tampa after Wednesday game and are back in action Thursday night against the Lightning . After Thursday game, the Canadiens will head directly to the Tampa airport and fly to Fort Lauderdale. They have a 1 p.m. practice scheduled for Friday at the Panthers practice facility in Coral Springs and then wrap up the road trip Saturday night against the Panthers . The San Jose Sharks will be at the Bell Centre next Tuesday night.

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