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Friday, February 13th (All times eastern)

Montreal Canadiens (29-20-6) at Colorado Avalanche (25-29-1), 9 p.m.

(Sports Network) - Both the Montreal Canadiens and Colorado Avalanche will be hoping to put sizeable losing streaks to an end when the two fading teams get together at the Pepsi Center this evening.

The Canadiens bring a four-game skid into Denver, matching the club's longest slide of the season, and have lost nine of their last 11 outings. They'll try to get back on track against a Colorado squad that is tied for the fewest points in the Western Conference and has dropped three in a row and 10 of its last 13 contests.

The Avalanche have won their last two tilts at the Pepsi Center, however, and are a respectable 16-13-0 as the host this season. Colorado returns home off a three-game road trip in which it failed to earn a point and scored just three times.

Colorado's most recent setback came Wednesday in Minnesota, where the Wild's Antti Miettinen scored with 1:11 remaining in regulation to lift his team to a 3-2 decision.

Ryan Smyth scored both Avalanche goals and Andrew Raycroft stopped 23-of-26 shots in the narrow defeat.

Raycroft has now lost in each of his last six appearances following a personal seven-start winning streak from November 29-January 10.

Montreal's problems have primarily come on the road, where the Habs have lost seven consecutive times and have been blown out in each of the first two tests of a six-game trek. After suffering a 6-2 defeat at the hands of Calgary on Monday, the Canadiens were routed by Edmonton by a 7-2 count Wednesday at Rexall Place.

Habs goaltender Carey Price's recent struggles continued in the Edmonton game, as the 21-year-old yielded four first-period goals and saved just 20-of-27 shots. The All-Star netminder allowed five goals in his previous start, a home loss to Toronto last Saturday.

Over his last nine starts, Price is just 2-7-0 with a 4.00 goals against average and an .863 save percentage.

The Canadiens will be attempting to avoid their first eight-game road losing streak since an 0-6-3 stretch from November 10-December 26, 2005. They'll also be without Tomas Plekanec for tonight's matchup, as the Czech forward received a two-game suspension by the league for tripping Edmonton's Denis Grebeshkov from behind in Wednesday's loss.

These teams will be meeting for the first time since Montreal posted an 8-5 win over the Avs at the Bell Centre on October 21, 2006. The Canadiens are winless in their last 10 encounters as the visitor in this series, having recorded seven losses and three ties over that span.

02/13 10:45:18 ET


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