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Times wires

MONTREAL - David Desharnais had two goals and an assist, and the Canadiens ended the Red Wings' seven-game winning streak with a 7-2 victory Wednesday in the NHL's final game before the All-Star break.

Montreal scored four times in the opening period against Jimmy Howard, who makes his first All-Star Game appearance Sunday in Ottawa. Howard was pulled after the period.

"I'm not going to look at the video of this at all," Detroit coach Mike Babcock said. "I'm going to go out and drink, actually.''

Detroit captain Nicklas Lidstrom sat out with the flu, ending his consecutive-games played streak at 213.

All-Star Game: Penguins forward James Neal replaces Capitals forward Alex Ovechkin, who backed out Tuesday after he was suspended for three games for a hit on Pittsburgh's Zbynek Michalek on Sunday.

Around the league: Sharks and former Lightning goalie Antero Niittymaki, at No. 3 on the depth chart in part because of injury, was waived. "I don't want to be in this organization at all anymore," Niittymaki told a Finnish TV network. He hasn't played since being activated Dec. 23 after hip surgery.

at Canadiens 4 2 1 7 Red Wings 0 0 2 2

First Period-1, Montreal, Bourque 15 (Gomez, Diaz), 5:08. 2, Montreal, Emelin 1 (Kostitsyn), 10:56. 3, Montreal, Desharnais 8 (Cole), 17:58. 4, Montreal, Plekanec 10 (Bourque, Kaberle), 19:33. Penalties-Eller, Mon (tripping), 5:45; Gill, Mon (hooking), 14:04; Kindl, Det (hooking), 16:12; Subban, Mon (elbowing), 16:30.

Second Period-5, Montreal, Pacioretty 17 (Desharnais, Cole), 1:52. 6, Montreal, Desharnais 9 (Pacioretty, Kaberle), 4:18 (pp). Penalties-Ericsson, Det (tripping), 3:27; Emelin, Mon (cross-checking), 6:33.

Third Period-7, Detroit, Hudler 14 (Helm), :21. 8, Detroit, Hudler 15 (Commodore, Kronwall), 6:07. 9, Montreal, Cole 19 (Eller), 18:37. Penalties-Ericsson, Det (tripping), 8:11. Shots on Goal-Detroit 6-12-9-27. Montreal 12-5-8-25. Power-play opportunities-Detroit 0 of 4; Montreal 1 of 3. Goalies-Detroit, Howard 30-11-1 (12 shots-8 saves), Conklin (0:00 second, 13-10). Montreal, Price 17-17-8 (27-25).