After a day off Friday, the Canadiens were back on the ice Saturday morning. A little extra attention paid to shootouts and the power play. Otherwise the main news was the participation of both Alexei Emelin and Daniel Briere in contact drills.
After practice Emelin told reporters his surgically rebuilt knee is 100 percent. He will meet with his doctor in New York Monday and expects to be cleared to play in a game some time next week. Emelin signed a four year 16.4 million dollar contract extension October 31st.
Briere says he is feeling no after-effects of the concussion he suffered in the Nashville game October 19th. He could also find himself in the lineup sometime next week. Like many of the Canadiens forwards Briere was struggling offensively with a goal and two assists in eight games. Two of the points came on empty-net goals.
With the anticipated return of Emelin and Briere, the Canadiens injury list which numbered seven two weeks ago, would be reduced to two; Brandon Prust and Davis Drewiske. Prust has a shoulder strain and continues to skate on his own while Drewiske underwent shoulder surgery and won’t be available until March.
Outside of the limited participation of Emelin and Briere, Michel Therrien again tried to inject some life into the Desharnais line by having Michael Bournival and Rene Bourque swap wings. Both Bourque and Bournival are natural left wingers. Bournival had been playing the right side.
Saturday’s Practice Units