Markov out for three months?

While it will be several days before doctors can make a complete diagnosis, there are unconfirmed reports that defenceman Andrei Markov could be out of the lineup for as long as three months.

Markov suffered an injury to his surgically repaired right knee Saturday night when he had a knee-to-knee collision with Carolina’s Eric Staal as they chased a puck into the corner. Markov’s knee hit the board but it appeared that any damage had been done before then. He threw his gloves off immediaterly after the contact and punched the boards and he lay writing on the ice. Two teammates assisted him off the ice and he wasn’t putting any weight on his left leg.

It’s the third injury Markov has suffered in the past 13 months. He suffered a torn tendon when his leg was sliced by Carey Price’s skate in a freak asccident in the 2009-10 season opener in Toronto. He injured his knee in the second round of the playoffs of the playoffs against Pittsburgh and had knee surgery in the off-season. He missed the first 10 games of the regular season In the seven games since his return, Markov was averaging close to 23 minutes a game, had a goal and two assists and was a plus-2.

After the Canadiens traded Ryan O’Byrne last week, general manager Pierre Gauthier expressed confidence in Alexandre Picard and said the Canadiens had several defence prospects in Hamilton. That depth will be put to the test if Markov is out for an extended period.

The latest injury also puts any talk of a new contract for Markov on the back burner. He is eligible to become an unrestricted free agent next July.

• Richard Labbé on the MAB solution

• Pierre Ladouceur on the Canadiens’ perfect week   


  1. habstrinifan says:

    I say Georges away from Gill except on the PK is now better for Georges. I see Georges becoming more versatile and Markov level if having to adjust his mindset from being the partner of Gill

  2. habstrinifan says:

    I wasnt fun of the Gill/Subban pairing when it happened but I kinda wanna give it a few more games. With one HUGE HUGE proviso. I want SUBBAN to continue being brave and assertive enough to take charge of the pairing. He didnt do it first game and it was totally messy. But last two games you see more Subban showing the confidence to not defer to Gill on the pairing. And this has helped Gill who seems to be enjoying this ‘burst of excitement’.

    Lets give this pairing a few more games. I kinda like it with that proviso.

    Timid and scared to join the ‘love fest’ re this guy Subban. But MAN-OH-MAN we are so lucky as habs fans to be able to say this is OUR player. I bet 99% of the other player sin the league and 1 million % of the fans in the league and 1 zillionth % of GM’S in the league (especially some from say Tampa and Columbus and Florida etc) would give their birthright to have this guy on their team.

    I think Subban and Georges is like puting two ‘same assets’ to compete on the same line. Gill knows he’s no Subban and Subban knows the long body-reach virtues of Gill. No competition.

    I would love JM to encourage Georges to now be more than “Gill’s partner” as I stated before. I think Georges is Streit +++. Streit’s mobility with more on the defensive end.


  3. FormalWare says:

    I far prefer PK-Picard, so as to keep the continuity of Gill-Gorges, who have been very solid, together.

    It occurs to me that we (the fans) are already moving forward with routine adjustments, in the face of losing our #1 defenseman; there’s not the wailing and gnashing of teeth there was last year, when Marky went down. This organization now has Depth–both current and longer-term, “in-the-pipe” depth. We’ll be OK!

  4. SmartDog says:

    If he IS out long term, and we don’t even know that yet, it’s possible the team will still do well.  Last year that wasn’t the case.  But the team play is stronger, PK has added some rocket fuel to the D that it needed.  The team plays more consistantly like a team and the additions of Picard, Eller, and Halpern especially are much more than spare parts.  They fit and have created a stronger team.  Could be very interesting without Marky.  Imagine if we do well without him… options open up, though a Markov is definitely a great thing to have.


  5. NightRyder says:

    They do repay him for his hard work – it’s called his giant salary, one that he collects whether or not he’s on the ice.

    In the salary cap era, this is more of a business than ever.


  6. Chuck says:

    This is HI/O. Panic is the ONLY choice.  🙂

    Centre Hice: New Canadiens rating systems

  7. Chuck says:

    Camouflage isn’t supposed to be pretty.

    Centre Hice: New Canadiens rating systems

  8. Ian Cobb says:

    No thats how many we have for and against

  9. Top Corner says:

    I dunno punkster…panic????

    Its tough to take if its 3 months yes, considering he JUST got back 6 games ago….but panic, helll NO

    Over the past 3 yrs., weve been getting used to seeing no Markov for long stretches of time , at this point in his career , he’s still got lots to offer, but with Hammer gone this year, and Spaceman next year , and with our prospects, PG has to be thinking about a couple new faces…..with proven experience , not potential (weve got lots of that).  Eh wha ???   or am i crazy….

    I wish nothing more for Andrei Markov who was drafted a HAB , to, when the day comes , retire a HAB !! 

    11-5-1… Ole’

  10. SmartDog says:


    It’s a good ‘5 Questions’ topic because it’s a complex situation all by itself. 

    What I’m seeing is that a lot of people say we should still extend him but not long term.  That might be a whole new set of problems because if the team is more reluctant now, but Marky still wants a long term deal…. oy!   The injury may be more costly than we even think now if we lose Markov next summer because of it.


  11. db says:

    Thank you.  Too many people make trades with EA stats…. Bieska has stunk it up

  12. NightRyder says:

    We can always just plug in first-round draft picks Ryan McDonagh or David Fischer, they’re destined to be longtime superstars.

  13. careyprice says:

    Could not have said it better myself.

    With PK developing at the rate he is, I wouldn’t want the Canadiens to sign Markov for 5-6 years if he has major knee problems. I would be much more comfortable with a 2 year deal. Lets just hope we are all just overreacting and he is in the iine-up Tuesday night…Wishful thinking

  14. rocketsglare says:

    Markov will be out that we know. It’s just a matter of how long. Given that, this team I believe is strong

    and resilient enough to pull together and continue to play as a team. The character and leadership on this

    team is remarkable and I don’t see any fall off in their play. I hope for a quick and complete recovery for



    Go Habs Go!

  15. punkster says:

    I was just about to do a 5 questions when i thought “WTF, my friend SD has marked his territory on this so best stay away” 😉

    1) Gorges and whoever he gets paired with (I’d prefer PK play with one of the older guys for now)

    2) Yes, we have the depth, the attitude and the nads

    3) Oh crap, I never thought of that. You’re an evil dog!

    4) Weber because he’s a right hand shot, but I’d like to see Henry for a bit

    5) c or d but I just don’t know yet

  16. Mikey_39 says:

    You can’t go back to Spacek-Hammer being your ”top” defensive pairing.  They’ve both looked fantastic playing less minutes with Markov back, and it should stay that way.  As far as I’m concerned the new defence pairings that JM was using were the best I’ve seen in a long time.  You can’t call up someone from Hamilton because they won’t be used enough to cover the added minutes.  Picard looked good, but you need a top dman.  I say we need to make a trade.  Look to a team that’s not going anywhere and offer draft picks.  There’s not many players on our team that I’d be willing to give away.

    As far as contract goes, I say we try to sign him sooner than later.  Take the contract off his mind.  I don’t want him rushing back knowing he’s playing for a contract.  And i’d want long-term, no two year deals

  17. NightRyder says:

    I wonder if Mr. Hickey knows what Markov was “writing” on the ice? Quickly trying to sign a new contract extension?

  18. kirbhabs says:

    How can anyone have a time line without knowing what the injury is, no MRI, no plan.  If I was MTL medical staff… and one day I hope to be, I would say 3 months just because any injury can heal in that amount of time and the media can back off.

  19. careyprice says:

    1. I would go with Gorges – Subban as our #1 pair.

    2. They went 4-3-0 with Markov, 7-2-1 without him. There is your answer.

    3. I didn’t really notice Markov making that much of a difference on the PP to begin with. With PK and Spacek they will be fine.

    4. Weber no questions asked. I bet they have his number on speed dial right now. 13 GP – 7 G – 4 A

    5. B…Markov is getting up there in age, his knee is obviously a problem. I obviously want Markov back but not at 5-6 years.


  20. sh00n says:

    1. Gill/PK
    2. We were before Markov got back, but our PP will suffer again unless we make a move.
    3. See #2.
    4. Weber, but I’m not confident in him whatsoever.
    5. D. I have almost zero confidence in Markov’s physical shape whatsoever, and no way in hell would I want us to give him a long term deal. I wouldn’t mind 2 years at a sharp decrease just to make him prove he can stay healthy, but anything more than that I wouldn’t want anything to do with his contract.

  21. db says:

    5.c.  If there’s interest at the deadline and the team proves it can make the push without him.. I’d take what I can get and resign him in the offseason :p  

  22. RGM says:

    The severity of this injury is obviously still up in the air but I do believe that if it’s a long-term thing, the Habs will be highly reticent to dish out a long-term contract to a player that has become succeptible to injury in recent years due to a combination of bad luck and previous injuries to the same area.

    Let’s go on the assumption that it is three months as is being speculated. That puts a return target area of mid-February. So there’d be about 6 weeks plus playoffs to evaluate him and whether he’d be fully recovered and capable of being the Andrei Markov that we all remember. I don’t believe that either side would be of the perception that just a few weeks–whether he’s awesome or awful–would be sufficient time to hand out a contract of several years.

    I think there may be a short-term deal in the offing. One or two years, maybe $5M per. If he shows that he can still go after that, give him one last big deal to finish his career as a Montreal Canadien. If he cannot, it will be time to part ways or perhaps move him upstairs or behind the bench.

    Go Habs Go!

  23. punkster says:

    Tough break. Let’s see what the MRI shows and what the doctors say first before we a) panic, b) consider trading him, c) panic, d) panic or e) panic.

    Of course at this point panic is the easiest choice.

  24. SmartDog says:


    If Marky IS out for 3 months:

    1. Who’s our #1 defensive pair now?

    2. Can we remain one of the top NHL teams without him?

    3. Will our PP go back to its pre-Markov slump?

    4. Which Hamilton D is first if a call-up is needed?

    5. Re. contract talks.. if you are Gauthier, which path would you PREFER TO TAKE if you could:

    … a. try to sign him long-term anyway, but at a declining salary, say 5-6 years at something like 5.5, 5.5, 4, 3.5, 3.5 million.

    … b. discuss resigning Marky to a short term extension – 2 years, at a modestly reduced salary, say 5.5 million

    … c. avoid talks until he recovers so you can see how the team does and what happens without him and what happens at the trade deadline.

    … d. avoid talks until next summer so you can see whether he’s a factor in the playoffs



  25. careyprice says:

    What is so discouraging about last night is how he threw his glove off and punched the boards. It was almost like he knew he re-injured his knee again.

  26. Mattyleg says:

    Yep, me too.

    I agree with the bad luck call. He’s been pretty rugged until recently.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  27. careyprice says:

    My only concern with Markov is the injuries lately. It has been reported that his camp is looking for a 6 year deal while the Canadiens brass wants 5. I think given how things have been going lately for Andrei they should try to look at a shorter deal. No doubt, Markov should be re-signed but at 5-6 years, I am not sure how I feel about that.

  28. Mikey_39 says:

    It probably won’t happen, but I’d love to see the habs extend Markov’s contract soon.  Many have said that he’s like glass, but personally I think it’s just a lot of bad luck.  He’s one of the best defencemen in the league.  I hope they keep him around

  29. kempie says:

    Yeah that is right. Wow that sucked rewatching that play. ahhh crap

  30. Mattyleg says:

    Excellent. I hadn’t read this when I posted mine above.

    Hear hear.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  31. habsperspective says:

    Actually this would be the fourth injury since April’09, one of the last games of the season against the leafs, same game we lost Schneider in.  Im sure we all remember that, we lost 8 staright games afterwards, 4 to end the regular season, and four straight more to get sweeped by the Bruins that spring.  Then the first game back of the next season, of course against the Leafs again.  Then Matt Cooke this past April, and now the fourth, Stall.


    Anyone remember Mike Van Ryn, the leafs, yeah, I think hes pushing paper now.  I would think you can only have so many knee repairs, they just dont work after a while.  Cam Neely was a pretty tough customer, and I think that may of ended his career. 


    Hopefully not, but it is a possibility.

  32. Seps says:

    Did anyone see the jerseys the Bulldogs wore he other night?  They had to be one of the ugliest jerseys, if not the ugliest jersey I’ve ever seen.  Even if it was for Rememberance Day I think they could’ve done a better job.


    Hockey is what’s called a team game.

  33. Mattyleg says:

    Lots of Xbox GMs on here talking about how we should trade Markov because he’s this or that.

    I’d like to think that the Montreal Canadiens believe in repaying players who have worked hard for the team and who have never been problematic or anything but positive.

    I know for a fact that if Markov wasn’t injured, people on here would be insisting we sign him for the rest of his life. Now that he’s injured, these same people are willing to toss him away like an empty poutine tray.

    Classy, guys, très classy.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  34. careyprice says:

    Although it looks like it was his left knee it was actually his right knee that buckled. Check the video here,

  35. Keith says:

    Great post and I hope the organization stands by him during this time.

  36. careyprice says:

    I really hope that the MRI will come back negative. It seems like Andrei has the worst luck. I knew right away when he threw his glove in the air that it wasn’t good. Lets just hope it isn’t as serious as RDS is reporting.

  37. kempie says:

    I’m confused here. I’m pretty sure that it was the left knee that was damaged in the Cooke hit. Last night, Staal clipped Markov’s right knee. Am I missing something here?

  38. MTLForever says:

    i could see kabs in a montreal jersey but the price for him is high cuz burke has too much value on him.

  39. Seps says:

    He’s too old, we’d be better off bringing up Weber.  He has 11 points in 13 games as a D in the AHL.


    Hockey is what’s called a team game.

  40. likehoy says:

    markov wasn’t standout in his games, but he was still our best break out pass, and our best at jumping into the play and supporting the attack.

    as you’ve said, we haven’t fully adjusted to having markov back, I hope for a swift return from markov cause we are no doubt a better team with him than without

    – I support Carey Price as the Number 1 Goalie!

  41. NightRyder says:

    Are those averages for goals against and goals for?

  42. NightRyder says:

    Isn’t that special?

    In a non-salary cap era, I’d tend to agree with you.

    Today, no chance. Markov will likely move on to somewhere like Detroit where he will play five more years and never miss a game.

    But as for loyalty in a salary cap world? Nah.

    This is also the organization that ran out Guy Lafleur, embarrassed Patrick Roy, feuded with Rocket Richard etc., so it isn’t always peaches and rainbows and rose-coloured Cobbs.

    However, we’re jumping the gun a little. If Markov is only out for three months, you fill the spot in-house and maybe he comes back stronger than ever and all this stress and speculation amounts to squad.

  43. kempie says:

    Excellent point

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