In the Habs’ Room: “We’ll keep building for next year,” says St. Louis

The Montreal coach says he is proud of his team’s efforts, despite the 2-0 loss to the Minnesota Wild at the Bell Center on Tuesday night.

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The Canadiens have lost six straight games, but coach Martin St. Louis said his team will continue to fight.

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“It would be easy to wrap it up, but we didn’t,” St. Louis said Tuesday night after losing 2-0 to the Minnesota Wild. “Looking at our last nine spells (s) against the Islanders, we were really good from start to finish. We had a really good half game against Washington and tonight, minus the first five or six minutes, we were really good.

“The guys have been instrumental in what we’re doing and the young guys understand how important these representatives are to them,” St. Louis said. “Together we are having a good time, because nobody likes to lose. We are going to fight to the end which we will continue to build next year.”

One not-so-young man building for next season is 34-year-old goalkeeper Carey Price, who has only made his second appearance of the season

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“I felt a lot more settled, I’ll get there,” Price said after making 28 saves. I’m starting to feel it’s a lot less chaotic there. Anyone who has been out for a long time knows that you don’t see it the way you normally would, pick up things the way you would. I definitely feel like I’m slowing down the game.”

Price said it was important for him to come back before the end of the season and play some games to regain his confidence and experience the playing conditions.

“Game form is really a thing,” he said. “But I feel like I was able to prepare myself in my spare time. There’s definitely a time when you might feel a little out of breath, but you still feel that way.”

Price took advantage of a TV timeout to chat with his young daughter Millie.

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“She wondered why they were scooping the ice cream,” Price said.

Price said he likes the way the Canadiens play for him.

“I thought we played really well the last two games I played in. We push the puck on the ice and use our speed where we are at our best. I thought it was better to sort our backchecks and kill plays tonight than the previous game.”

But like the last game, there were no Montreal goals. Price noted that the Canadiens had opportunities and he also noted that Montreal faced two good goalkeepers in the Islanders’ Ilya Sorokin and the Wild’s Cam Talbot, who made 26 saves before the shutout.

“It would be nice to score for Carey for sure and it’s not that we’re not trying or that the effort isn’t there,” St. Louis insisted.

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Paul Byron’s season is in jeopardy. He did not return to the bench after the first break and the team said he suffered an upper body injury.

St. Louis said Byron has been battling the injury for a few weeks now. However, it was too early to say whether the fast winger should end the rest of the campaign.

“He fights every day to play. He wants to be with the team. He’s a competitive player and it’s hard not to rely on him 100 percent,” St. Louis said of Byron.

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