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Injury-riddled Canadiens close out long homestand

Washington (17-10-3) at Montreal (16-7-5), 7:00 pm EST

MONTREAL (Ticker) -- The Montreal Canadiens will be without

captain Saku Koivu when they complete a seven-game homestand

against the Washington Capitals on Saturday.

Koivu injured his foot during the first period of the Thursday's

3-1 loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning. The Finn took five shifts

in the middle session before retreating to the locker room for


With Chris Higgins and defensemen Mike Komisarek and Mathieu

Dandenault already on the shelf, the Canadiens' injury list

continues to grow as Georges Laraque, Koivu and goaltender Carey

Price are also ailing.

"Carey still wasn't feeling well this morning, so he went to see

the doctor this morning," Canadiens coach Guy Carbonneau told

the team's web site. "Georges is still battling a lower body

injury. Saku is going to need an MRI, and (Higgins) is going to

meet with doctors on Saturday morning."

Koivu has recorded seven goals and 15 assists with a team-best

plus-11 rating in 28 games.

The Capitals are starting to get healthier as defenseman Mike

Green and center Sergei Fedorov both returned for Friday's 5-1

rout of the Ottawa Senators.

Alex Ovechkin had a pair of goals and Fedorov and Nicklas

Backstrom added three assists apiece for Washington, which is

seeking its third straight win and fifth in its last six games.


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