Just when you think things are getting back to normal, they fall apart.
Alex Kovalev will get the green light to return to the lineup tonight after missing 13 games. The Canadiens managed only 4 wins in that time span. Kovalev will no doubt be rusty tonight and for the next few games while he re-adjusts to his new knee.
As we welcome one player back, he makes room in the infirmary for more. Richard Zednik is suffering from flu symptoms and Tomas Plekanec is going to miss at least the rest of December with a twisted knee. Saku Koivu won’t dress tonight as his injured groin has been ‘tweaked’ and they don’t want to risk re-injury. Jose Theodore is still having problems bending his knee after taking a shot to the knee cap last Thursday in Edmonton. Theodore commented that the new NHL size limitations on his equipment contributed to the fact he got hit in a vulnerable spot. Cristobal Huet will start his second consecutive game tonight. His second game in about 25 years and it’s against the Ottawa Senators. On paper things aren’t looking too good for Les Habitants. Of course anything can happen and hopefully Kovalev’s return will inspire some confidence in the rest of the team.
Mike Ribeiro is one of those guys who needs to wake up and produce. There is a lot of speculation that Peter Sykora is on the trade market and that the Habs are front runners in the negotiations. The Canadiens may be looking to replace an underachieving attitude riddled player with a proven goal scorer and I can only think of one Hab that fits the description. I’m not sure this deal will happen but if it does Mickey Ribs is one of the only players I think can be considered expendable.