Montreal Canadiens defenceman Andrei Markov won’t be able bail his team out of trouble any time soon. The club announced on Wednesday that he underwent successful knee surgery, which is the good news. The bad news for Habs fans is that one of the team’s top defenders will be missing six months of action.
Markov did take a light practice skate last week, but it turned out that he suffered a tear of the anterior cruciate ligament of his right knee.
Markov suffered the injury in a collision with Matt Cooke of the Pittsburgh Penguins during an April 30 playoff game.
The defenceman hasn’t had the best of seasons for the Canadiens, going through quite a bit of bad luck throughout the regular season only to have it continue in the post-season. Markov suffered a cut tendon on his left foot in the very first game of the year and was out of action until December 19. He made it back in time to join the Russian team for the Olympics.
Perhaps predictably, the peanut gallery of many sports websites features commentary about Markov’s injury prone nature and how he lacks heart (see the CBC Sports article on this injury for proof). While it’s never surprising to see hockey fans bail on players and teams at the slightest hint of adversity, the critique of Markov is pretty hollow.
In any event, the Habs will and do miss Markov’s presence on the blueline. He is an elite player in the National Hockey League and most Habs fans will have to agree that the timing on this could not have been worse.
Posted by Jordan Richardson.