Habs give Briere a shot on first line


The Montreal Canadiens appear eager to give Danny Briere every opportunity to prove that he has plenty left in the tank after being bought out by the Philadelphia Flyers this summer. Early on, they’re giving him a look on the first line alongside David Desharnais and Max Pacioretty, TSN reports.

Habs head coach Michel Therrien managed to give credibility to the trio sticking together while also leaving the door open to juggle things if needed.

“We’ll try different lines during the camp,” Therrien said on Thursday. “But we already have a good idea of what we want to do.”

Briere, 35, signed a two-year, $8 million contract with Montreal, so the Canadiens would love to see him put it together after a tough couple seasons.

The other new combo featured Christian Thomas skating with Rene Bourque and Tomas Plekanec, although that might have something to do with Brian Gionta sitting out that session because he’s still recovering from surgery on his left biceps tendon.

Welcome back, Babs: Red Wings chase Bernier

Mike Babcock
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Mike Babcock admitted that there might be a painful transformation as he tries to fix the Toronto Maple Leafs.

His old friends made that abundantly, painfully clear on Friday.

As of this writing, the Detroit Red Wings are up 4-0 on the Buds. Justin Abdelkader just completed a hat trick with James Reimer in net, so the subplot isn’t just about Jonathan Bernier having another tough start.

The big story might just be Detroit’s varied new line of Abdelkader, Dylan Larkin (who scored his first career goal) and Henrik Zetterberg. At the moment, they’ve combined for seven points.

This post will be updated if Detroit’s tribute video to Babcock surfaces.

Really, though, this beating has been about as ugly as this blanket so far.

Blue Jackets’ Wennberg done for night with upper-body injury

Alexander Wennberg, Jay Bouwmeester
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It wouldn’t be a regular season game without a Columbus Blue Jackets injury, right?

OK, the Blue Jackets hope that 2015-16 looks different from the medically challenged mess of last season, but at least one player is banged up tonight.

Alexander Wennberg suffered an upper-body injury and won’t return on Friday, as the team noted.

There’s no word yet regarding how serious the issue might be. It looks like he might have suffered an injury thanks to a Chris Kreider check:

Naturally, the Blue Jackets must hope that this doesn’t begin another trend.