Eric Staal; Andrei Markov; PK Subban;

Habs’ Andrei Markov out “long term” with knee injury

The worry over Canadiens defenseman Andrei Markov’s knee injury in Montreal is about to grow exponentially. Dave Stubbs of Habs Inside/Out tweets today that Markov will be out “long term” for an undetermined amount of time. It’s been a mystery surrounding Markov about how long he would be out for since he was hurt on Saturday night against Carolina, but the Habs reporting at least this much can’t be good news for Montreal or its fans.

As for what the Canadiens will have to do now with Markov out for what we’re assuming to be a long time, the pressure for young defenseman P.K. Subban to continue to improve and play great will increase. Subban has had a solid season to this point and has played well as a offense generating blue liner. Asking him to step up into the role of the team’s lead power play quarterback might be asking a lot of the 21 year-old.

If you’re thinking that the Habs acted too soon in dealing Ryan O’Byrne to the Avalanche last week, you can relax on that talk. O’Byrne was buried on the Habs depth chart to the point he had two other defensemen ahead of him. Besides, O’Byrne’s and Markov’s style of play couldn’t be more opposite of each other. Playing without Markov is becoming a bit too regular for the Habs, and unfortunately for Markov it comes at a bad time as he’s due to become an unrestricted free agent at the end of this season. If he needed better motivation to try and hurry up and get back on the ice this season, a bigger paycheck next year could be it.

Video: Pekka Rinne’s zero-margin-of-error stick save

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Sometimes, the Nashville Predators were unlucky in November. Sometimes they were just bad.

Either way, they’re likely glad to step into December, and they’ve already gotten a big bounce. Watch how close this near-goal was into crossing the red line before Pekka Rinne barely stopped it with a well-placed goalie stick.

You can also see it up close via this GIF:

Here’s the NHL Situation Room Blog explanation for it remaining a no-goal:

At 13:06 of the first period in the Coyotes/Predators game, the Situation Room initiated a video review to further examine a play from 11:57. Video review confirmed the call on the ice that the puck did not cross the Nashville goal line. No goal Coyotes.

Alexei Emelin was ejected for this hit on Matt Calvert


Alexei Emelin has been in and out of the Montreal Canadiens lineup, but this wasn’t the way they wanted him to keep his legs fresh.

The hard-hitting defenseman received a game misconduct and five-minute major penalty for a late hit on Columbus Blue Jackets forward Matt Calvert on Tuesday.

So far, it sounds like Calvert may be OK.

You can see video of that hit above, as well as a GIF of the infraction via My Regular Face.

Many believe that Emelin should not have been ejected.

Injuries continue to dog Lupul as Leafs place him on IR

Joffrey Lupul
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Injuries have been a regular problem for Joffrey Lupul for much of his time with the Toronto Maple Leafs, and it doesn’t look like that’s changing in 2015-16.

The team placed him on injured reserve retroactive to Nov. 28, calling up Rich Clune in the process.

This IR stint means that Lupul will miss at least three games for Toronto.

From the sound of things, it’s a nagging issue, as notes.

“He’s been having the same problem here for a bit,” Mike Babcock told media members on Sunday. “He doesn’t seem to be getting the power back that they thought, so we’re just trying to monitor it the best we can.”

Leafs Nation points out that Lupul has missed about one-third of Toronto’s contests since suffering a separated shoulder in April 2012.

At 32, there’s still time for Lupul to fight through this, although injuries generally accumulate with age.

WATCH LIVE: Wild at Blackhawks; Penguins at Sharks

Scott Darling, Charlie Coyle
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Will Ryan Suter say something foolish during tonight’s game? Is Brent Burns‘ beard so long that it’s finally starting to scrape the ice?

We’ll find out the answer to those questions and more during Tuesday’s NBCSN doubleheader.

Need to follow the two games online? Never fear.

Game 1: Minnesota Wild at Chicago Blackhawks


Game 2: Pittsburgh Penguins at San Jose Sharks