May 19, 2010, 6:20 PM EDT
Montreal Canadiens defenseman Andrei Markov will miss about six months after having successful surgery on his torn ACL earlier today. The team expects him to be out until early next season, according to an NHL.com report.
Markov was injured early in Game 1 of the Canadiens’ second-round series against Pittsburgh on April 30 and has not played since. He has skated at practice, leading to rumors that he might be able to play again in the postseason.
The surgery repaired a torn ACL, and General Manager Pierre Gauthier said the recovery time is estimated at six months — which means the 31-year-old defenseman would miss the early weeks of the 2010-11 season.
Obviously being without Markov weakens the Habs blueline, although there might be a silver lining to it. Without their star defenseman, players such as Josh Gorges and Hal Gill were forced to take on bigger roles and in many instances passed those tests with flying colors.
The powerplay might be the area where the team misses Markov the most, as the player is comparable to Sergei Gonchar in terms of productivity. He’s one of the league’s most underrated defenseman, in my opinion. Considering the fact that the Canadiens have yet to score on Michael Leighton, it seems like his absence finally caught up to them.
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