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Alex Auld, seen in the pre-season, is set to play Friday for Montreal. ((Ryan Remiorz/Canadian Press))

Backup Alex Auld will get his first start in goal for the Montreal Canadiens on Friday.

The club will rest Carey Price for the game against the Islanders in New York.

Price has started all nine games this season and has been solid in posting a 6-2-1 record with a 2.32 goals-against average. He'll return to the net Saturday at home against the Florida Panthers.

The Canadiens also confirmed that defenceman Andrei Markov will return from a knee injury on Saturday.

The Canadiens signed Auld in the off-season after their controversial trade of goalie Jaroslav Halak to St. Louis.

Halak had won the starting job from Price late last season and excelled as the team reached the NHL Eastern Conference final.

Auld says he knew he'd eventually get his chance.

"Any time your get an opportunity with a new team you're excited," said 29-year-old. "Maybe a few years ago I would have dwelled on it more but now my focus is day-to-day.

"I found that if you start worrying about the games you're not playing then you're not ready when it's your turn. I just had to stay sharp. I knew it would come."