Habs hope to redeem rep

DENIS POISSANT, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 8:44 AM ET

The Montreal Canadians will have a chance to redeem themselves tonight in Edmonton following their disastrous display against Vancouver the other night.

Yesterday, Habs coach Jacques Martin was doing his best to get his players fired up.

"It's a message I wanted to (send to them)," he said. "The guys have to be ready for war every night."

Martin said the team's collective effort has been lacking, something the coach chalked up, at least partially, to the many new faces and the new coach.

Yesterday, Martin put the players through a tough skate, though they were all smiles as they moved around the ice while practicing short passes and working on their transition game.

When Martin took out his marker to explain a play to the team, everyone was attentive.

Goaltender Cary Price said that it was important that the players could gain some positives from such a one-sided loss. He added that practicing hard the following day reminded the players what they had to do.

"Now, we have something to prove and there is excitement in the air coming up to our next game."

If the Habs can pull out a win tonight against the Oilers, they will head home with a respectable 3-2 record.

"Finishing such a long road trip on a good note will help us breathe easier," said forward Scott Gomez.

TERRIBLE PK: While Martin said he was generally happy with the team's play after four games, he wants to see their penalty kill improve.

Big time.

Before yesterday's games, the Canadiens found themselves second-last in the league on the penalty kill with a lowly 56.2 % kill rate. Not the best way to give your team a chance to win.

denis.poissant@sunmedia.ca


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