for this game

Struggling Habs try to solve Canucks in BC

Feb 22, 2011 - 4:23 PM (Sports Network) - Montreal has yet to lose four games in a row this season, but could do so tonight if it can't find a way to break a lengthy losing streak in Vancouver.

The Canadiens hope to avoid a ninth straight road loss to the Canucks in tonight's meeting at Rogers Arena.

Montreal has lost six of its last seven and is four points back of Boston for first place in the Northeast Division. The Habs were unable to find their offense in the chilly temperatures of Calgary on Sunday, falling 4-0 to the Flames in the Heritage Classic at McMahon Stadium.

It marked the first regular-season outdoor game in Canada since Edmonton hosted Montreal on Nov. 22, 2003. The Canadiens left town with a 4-3 victory in that one, but wasn't as lucky on front of more than 41,000 fans on Sunday.

Carey Price battled temperatures that sat around 16 degrees Fahrenheit at game time and allowed four goals on 37 shots. Two of the goals allowed came while down a man, while Price also yielded a short-handed tally.

"The difference in the game was special teams, obviously," said Montreal head coach Jacques Martin. "The short-handed goal was probably the turning point because I thought we had good momentum and after that it kind of turned around."

Montreal lost despite getting forward Mike Cammalleri back from a separated left shoulder that had sidelined him since the middle of January. Defenseman Hal Gill also returned after a four-game absence with an upper-body injury.

The Canadiens end a three-game tour of Western Canada tonight and are gunning for their first victory in Vancouver since Nov. 30, 2000.

Montreal did notch a 2-0 home win over Vancouver on Nov. 9 behind 34 saves by Price for its second victory in a row over the Canucks, but were drilled 7-1 in their last trip to Rogers Arena on Oct. 7, 2009.

The Canucks continue a six-game homestand they kicked off with Saturday's 5-2 victory over the Stars. Daniel Sedin scored twice and had an assist to take over the NHL lead with 77 points, while Raffi Torres also scored twice to end a 23-game goal drought.

Roberto Luongo made 22 saves for the Canucks, who have alternated wins and losses over their last seven games. The goaltender pointed out his club killing off nearly a minute of 5-on-3 shorthanded play in the first period as a turning point.

"It was a key moment in the game," Luongo said. "They had just tied it, and we were down a couple guys. So the three killers on the ice did a tremendous job. They didn't have much for the whole 52 seconds, and I think the team really fed off that and took off afterward."

The Canucks lead the Red Wings by five points for the most in the Western Conference with 85, two more than the Flyers for the overall NHL lead.

Vancouver's injury-riddled blue line should get a boost tonight with the possible return of two players. Dan Hamhuis is set to return from a five-game absence caused by a concussion suffered on Feb. 9, while Keith Ballard is expected to be a game-time decision after missing the last six contests with a sprained right knee.