After hitting the skids, Habs prepare to hit the road

Price: "It starts with me."

Price: “It starts with me.”

So much for fan appreciation night.

The Montreal Canadiens closed out the home portion of the season with a 5-1 loss to the Washington Capitals Saturday night  in a game which saw the Caps score early and often on Carey Price.

Alex Ovechkin made it 1-0 Washington 4:49 in.  And Troy Brouwer made it 2-0 Caps some two minutes later: on just three shots on goal. It was 4-0 after two before Ovechkin made it 5-0 at 13:23 with his second of the night. Brouwer also finished with a pair for the Capitals.

“I think we can all play better as a group and it starts with me,” said Price.

Max Pacioretty snapped Braden Holtby’s shutout bid at 14:51 of the third period with his 13th of the season.  The Habs have dropped four of their last five in ugly, lopsided fashion, outscored 25-12 in the process,  as they prepare to close out the season with three games on the road.

“I’m disappointed with every aspect of our game: 5 on 5, penalty killing power play,” said Canadiens’ coach Michel Therrien when this one was over.

The coach isn’t alone in that one.

“We need to be better at a lot of things, honestly,” added Therrien. “We were behind the eight-ball right from the start. My focus as a coach is to make sure that we need to practice, we have three games coming up this week, to make us ready for the playoffs.  That is my responsibility.”

The Habs have lost four of their last five games: having been outscored 25-12 in the process, saving perhaps the ugliest for last — the final regular-season game on Bell Centre ice.

“To go out there at the end and have to meet people that are great fans, that come and support us every night, and to have to shake their hands after a disappointing after like that — they don’t deserve that,” lamented Josh Gorges.

He’s right about that.

The Canadiens return to action Tuesday in New Jersey against the Devils.  They’re back on the ice 11 a.m. at Brossard for a rare Sunday practice.

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