Wisniewski has shared Markov’s pain

Former Canadien James Wisniewski (centre) during the Columbus Blue Jackets’ morning skate at the Bell Centre on Tuesday.
Stubbs video capture

Columbus defenceman James Wisniewski is intimately aware of what Habs rearguard Andrei Markov is going through as he rehabilitates a second ACL reconstruction.

Wisniewski, who played 43 games for the Habs last season, has had three ACL reconstructions. Wiz was brought in through trade with the New York Islanders to fill in for the ailing Markov, then signed with Columbus as a UFA on July 1, a staggering six-year, $33-million contract.

The veteran said after Tuesday’s morning skate that it’s the mental side of rehabbing from two ACL rebuilds that’s probably hardest on Markov. Wiz had two ACL surgeries at age 23 and 24, injuries suffered 14 months apart. He had had another at age 18, tearing the ligament while playing for the U.S. in the under-18 world championship.

The rehab, he said of his own program and surely something close to that prescribed for Markov, “is gruelling. You know you’re going to feel better, then worse, then start (to improve). You want to do more but you can’t. It’s a waiting game. It’s a chess game, not checkers. It’s about getting the blood supply to the new ACL and that takes time.

“It was devastating … traumatic,” he added of having blown out the same knee twice in 14 months. “It was the mental grind, knowing I had six months of the same rehab.”

Full column is coming on Wisniewski, who returns to the Bell Centre Tuesday night for the first time since he left the Canadiens.

Here’s an interesting animation of how an ACL reconstruction can be done:


  1. KLear says:

    After seeing that its a wonder that knee can do anything….

  2. Mickeyy says:

    I liked when had Wiz on our team while he was here and would like to have kept him but not at the price he got as a UFA. Wayy to much especailly with Carey needing a long term deal, patches, subban etc.

    Saku you’ll always be #1

  3. LafleurFan says:

    Tommy Pyatt scored a nice goal for T Bay last night!

    “May you live in interesting times.”

  4. Neutral says:

    The wiz has the same amount of points at Kostitsyn – not bad for a D-man.

  5. samTHEman says:

    Habs suck against teams they should beat (Islanders, Ducks, Oilers the past 2 years, Columbus 0-3 last year).

    My prediction is that they will continue on that stride. Although I hope they come out with the 2 points, I find it hard to be optimistic.

    Wiz pots one tonight. So do Pacioretty and Subban (he’s due)

  6. karatekid says:

    Go Wiz. It’s going to be good seeing him again tonight. Too bad he’s in the wrong uniform.

    Come for Habs, Stay for Weird

  7. Top Corner says:

    Need some help understanding this new allignment stuff…..

    Are the playoffs 5 game series in the first 2 rounds now? Heard this today at work , didnt make sense to me. Buttman is about the $$ so less games seems odd.

  8. christophor says:

    I’m guessing the reasoning behind pushing the Tootoo decision off one day was to wait until after the realignment announcement was made. (Look at the background of Shanny’s video; I’m guessing it’s the press backdrop at the GMs meeting)

    People aren’t really talking as much about it, so I guess it worked.

    It’s probably the least convincing video Shanny’s made yet. The replay is manipulated to make it look like Tootoo had way more time to change course. Shanny cites the point when Tootoo lost the puck and looked up, and then argues this was well enough in advance of reaching Miller. Compare the distance from that point to Miller and the distance between Campoli and Malone when Campoli lost the puck, and you’ll notice the latter is the greater distance by far. And yet Shanny argued Malone hadn’t the time to avoid contact.

    The explanation at the end about how jumping made it worse was sketchy. I guess Shanny didn’t take high school physics and so doesn’t realize how much more momentum would have transferred into Miller had Tootoo stayed planted.

    I think the play maybe deserved a game or two, but the video just reeked of ‘lets try to make this look as bad as possible so we don’t look like idiots about the Lucic hit’. It was an intentionally uncharitable interpretation. That plus the strategy of sneaking the decision in while the limelight is stolen by realignment talk: rather disgusting.

    • LafleurFan says:

      Good points. Shanahan is inexperienced and way too inconsistent. Don’t trust his decision-making ability for the future.

      “May you live in interesting times.”

    • MilaKunis says:

      I nominate Mathieu Darche to replace Shanahan. I believe someone with an educated brain needs to be in that position.

    • NCRhabsfan says:

      Shanahan is completely unqualified for what he’s doing. It’s a shame he’s sullying what was a decent reputation in this charade as the league’s “disciplinarian”. Do you think he and Buttman exchange high fives every time they have one of these incidents? I think they love the brawl and media attention they get from it.

    • Un Canadien errant says:

      This ruling all but comes with an admission by Mr. Shanahan that he’d like a mulligan on the Milan Lucic ruling.

      How about it NHL? No fighting, just hockey?


  9. ari says:

    To maksimir, if Gomez is the second worst trade, which one is the first one? Patrick Roy?

  10. Danno says:

    Nobody beats the Wiz.

    I miss him. Too bad he was too expensive for our limited pocketbook – drained by the largest black hole in Habs history.

    Tonight’s game should be an easy two points which is why it won’t be.


    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”

  11. Arrow77 says:

    I know months in the NHL feels like decades in the outside world but I do remember people being excited about the Blue Jackets this year, with the combo Carter – Nash that was supposed to dominate.

    Boy, did that turn out different…

  12. Say Ash says:

    lol Wisniewski: “It’s a chess game, not checkers”


  13. Habsolutely says:

    Always liked Wiz, he was a stand up guy for us. It would have cost us way too much dough to keep him. Hope he doesn’t burn us tonight.

  14. Rudy says:

    Ok, I am seriously woozy from that video, i need to put my head on my desk. Can you imagine sitting in that chair while it moves your leg, ALL DAY. I would go crazy!

  15. Maksimir says:

    I wish Wiz had stayed in Mtl but he isn’t worth that much money. He had a lot of defensive lapses when looking to sneak in goals. Mind you I know the money they paid Markov hasn’t exactly gotten much on the return either. Then again, if it wasn’t for Gomez they could have had Wiz and Markov and still had money left in the penny jar. Oh Gainey… you really blew that one big time. Second worse trade in Montreal history I think.

  16. Armitagej says:

    Wow that surgery looks brutal.

  17. RGM says:

    I like Wiz. He’s a good guy and you can’t fault him for taking that contract with the Jackets. When you’ve bounced around to 4 clubs in your first 6 years in the NHL, stability is a welcome change. I wish him well in a losing cause tonight.
    GO HABS GO! 2011-12 is our year!

    • Bob_Sacamano says:

      I don´t know. He probably could have easily signed a five-year 20m+ contract at a much better team and place than Columbus. Would have respected that much more. He just went for the money. If you get 4m or 6m a year over five or six years, well the difference has no real impact on your life. The Stanley Cup on the other hand you can´t win with the Blue Jackets…

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