Decimated defense: Habs lose Beaulieu (lower body) for 2-3 weeks

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This is getting ridiculous.

Having already lost defensemen Tom Gilbert and Jeff Petry for the remainder of the season, Montreal will now be without a third blueliner — Nathan Beaulieu — for the next 2-3 weeks due to a lower body injury.

Montreal made the announcement on Friday, roughly 24 hours after revealing that Petry would be done for the year following sports hernia surgery, and that Gilbert would miss the next six months recovering from a left knee procedure.

Beaulieu hasn’t played since getting hurt against Nashville on Monday, which means Wednesday’s game win over Washington gave a good idea of what the Habs’ blueline will resemble moving forward, without the aforementioned three available:

P.K. Subban, Andrei Markov, Alexei Emelin, Mark Barberio, Greg Pateryn and Victor Bartley.

It’s a pretty thin defense, to say the least.

A former first-round pick, Beaulieu certainly would’ve been in line for an expanded role with Gilbert and Petry gone for the season. The 17th overall pick in 2011 had been enjoying a nice offensive campaign, with two goals and a career-best 17 points through 56 games.