Coming off his 45-save shutout on Tuesday, Evgeni Nabokov was an easy call to get back in net tonight against the Canadiens at the Coliseum.
Milan Jurcina returns from a two-game absence due to a lacerated elbow, and not a moment too soon -- with Dylan Reese (sprained left MCL) out at least a month, the Isles need every defenseman they can get back in. Jurcina will pair with Andrew MacDonald to start tonight.
Travis Hamonic (broken nose) is "still in pretty rough shape," according to Jack Capuano, though teammates said Hamonic is well enough to attend tonight's game. He may get back on the ice by the weekend or early next week.
Mike Mottau (concussion) skated on his own today, his first time on the ice since he was sidelined on Jan. 2.
Brian Rolson will be the healthy scratch again among the forwards.
Also among the forwards, John Tavares has now gone three straight games without a point. The Isles are 2-0-1 in those games, but the greater worry is that Tavares may be overstaying his shifts to try and generate some offense. The Isles' power play, which had been on a strong run, is 0-for-7 over the last three games, with one SHG allowed and a ton of chances surrendered on Tuesday in Philly.
"We had a couple games where (the power play) really could have helped us," Tavares said. "We need to get back to basics a little bit. I don't think we're moving our feet as well as we were on our entries into the zone."
Tavares said he extended his shifts too much against the Sabres on Saturday. "In my game, I try to feed off intensity and adrenaline and use my strength, and extending my shifts can definitely take away from that," he said. "I have to be more mindful and keep them shorter."