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Canadiens open road trip against Wild

Montreal (6-1-1) at Minnesota (6-2-1), 8:00 p.m. EDT

ST. PAUL, Minnesota (Ticker) -- The Montreal Canadiens begin a

four-game road trip on Thursday, when they visit the Minnesota

Wild in a clash between two of the league's hottest teams.

Montreal finished a fine 4-1-0 homestand with a 3-2 shootout

victory over the Carolina Hurricanes on Tuesday. Carey Price

stopped all three attempts he faced in the shootout and finished

with 31 saves in the win.

Canadiens captain Saku Koivu and defenseman Andrei Markov lead

the team with 10 points apiece, although both will have to start

a new scoring streak. Markov had recorded a point in seven

straight games before Tuesday's win, while Koivu had his

six-game points streak snapped.

Minnesota is looking to bounce back after a rare loss as it

dropped a 4-2 decision at Dallas on Wednesday.

Niklas Backstrom was pulled after allowing three first-period

goals on 13 shots for the Wild, who are 3-0-1 at home this

season. The Finnish netminder has started every game for

Minnesota thus far.

It will be Montreal's first visit to Minnesota since a 4-3

overtime loss on December 17, 2005.


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