Montreal Canadiens lines at practice: September 28 - Mete/Weber split up

Bottom six shakeup and defensive scramble highlight today’s practice session

The Canadiens took to the ice on Thursday, a day after their most recent preseason loss.

The lines were mostly familiar, with the Jonathan Drouin and Tomas Plekanec lines staying intact. After having developed good chemistry with Phillip Danault earlier this week, Shaw has stayed on his line with Alex Galchenyuk, while Ales Hemsky sees him fall all the way from the first line at the start of training camp, to the fourth line.

However, this has little to do with Hemsky himself and is just Claude Julien looking to find the right combinations.

Speaking of falling, it appears that Torrey Mitchell might perhaps be on the verge of losing his spot as fourth line centre to Jacob de la Rose, as Mitchell was practicing on the wing of Peter Holland, among a group of six players likely facing a near future in Laval.

The defensive pairings however were not known at the time of this writing. Not because the defencemen were not on the ice, but that there were so many iterations of pairings that there was no discernible order.

Clearly the team is trying everything they can to maximize chemistry among the nine defencemen available to them. David Schlemko remains injured and did not practice with the team.

The defensive pairings eventually settled on the following combinations, with the most notable point being that the pairing of Victor Mete and Shea Weber has been split up, with Jakub Jerabek getting a look alongside the Habs veteran defenceman.

Meanwhile, with back-to-back games coming up, the Canadiens recalled forward Nikita Scherbak from the Laval Rocket, something he had hinted at during interviews earlier this week.

Carey Price and Zachary Fucale were the goaltenders today as Charlie Lindgren and Al Montoya remain day-to-day with injuries. Lindgren suffered a lower-body injury during warmups prior to their game against the Maple Leafs on Monday, while Montoya was hit with a puck in the neck during the morning skate on Wednesday.

With 33 players at camp now with the addition of Scherbak, the Canadiens will need to trim the roster by ten players, down to 23 by Tuesday at 10:00 a.m.

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