The Montreal Canadiens might have to get used to playing without defenceman Andrei Markov for quite some time.
Citing unconfirmed reports, the Montreal Gazette speculates that Markov could be out of the Canadiens lineup for up to three months after suffering an injury to his surgically repaired knee during Saturday's blowout victory over the Carolina Hurricanes.
The 31-year old Russian blueliner suffered the injury when he collided knee-on-knee with Hurricanes' captain Eric Staal late in the third period. Markov punched the boards in frustration and had to be helped off the ice by teammates. He was unable to put any weight on his leg as he headed to the dressing room.
He was scheduled to undergo an MRI on Sunday to determine the extent of the injury.
It would be a devastating loss for the Canadiens who have been playing their best hockey of the season since Markov returned to the lineup on October 30th. In seven games so far this season Markov has a goal and two assists.