If the lines from the morning skate, as reported by La Presse's François Gagnon, are maintained tonight then Matt D'Agostini will not be dressed against the Washington Capitals.
Gagnon reports the lines will be as follows:
A. Kostitsyn – Plekanec – Kovalev
Latendresse – Lang – S. Kostitsyn
Bégin – Lapierre – Dandenault
Markov – Gorges
Hamrlik – O’Byrne
Bouillon – Brisebois
Halak in nets
I have trouble understanding why D'Agostini would not be given a shot on Koivu's right side. Kostopoulos actually played pretty well there against Detroit, but he is not blessed with great hands, nor is Christopher Higgins. D'Agostini appears to be a guy cut from the same mold as Michael Ryder - has a quick, heavy shot but playing without the puck is not his specialty. A spot on the same line as Higgins - who excels without the puck - seems like a natural fit, and getting his feet wet in the low-pressure environment of Washington seemed like a perfect opportunity to see what D'Agostini can offer.
While I'm a bit perplexed with Guy Carbonneau's decision on this, starting Jaroslav Halak in nets doesn't seem to me to be such a ridiculous idea. There are some who would say playing him against Atlanta on Tuesday makes far more sense, but Halak had to play one of these back-to-back games, and why not get him in there while the Habs are playing well defensively, and on the road? Carbo would never admit this, but he does his best to make sure his No. 1 guy is tending goal at the Bell Centre for those demanding fans.