Blog Entry

Markov's knee is still a concern

Posted on: September 15, 2011 9:51 pm
Edited on: September 15, 2011 10:07 pm
 
Markov

By: Adam Gretz

The Montreal Canadiens took a rather large gamble this summer when they signed veteran defenseman Andrei Markov to a three-year, $17.2 million contract extension.

It wasn't a gamble because he isn't worth that type of money in the current market as a point-producing defenseman and power play quarterback, but because he's entering his mid-30's and has missed significant playing time in each of the past two seasons, suffering two torn ACL's, the most recent of which cost him all but seven games of the 2010-11 regular season.

It appears that he's had a bit of a setback in his rehab according to Tony Mariano of the Team 990 Radio, and had to have some water drained from his knee three weeks ago.

The setback was reportedly a result of overtraining, which obviously means he needs to now dial it back a notch and take things a little slower. Given that he just signed a contract that's paying him over $5 million per season and has appeared in just 52 regular season games the past two years, the possibility of him not being ready for the start of the season has to be a concern for the Canadiens given how much he means to their defense and power play.

When he's on the ice Markov runs Montreal's power play, logs between 22 and 24 minute of ice-time per game and is one of the top scoring defensemen in the league. During the 2009-10 season, when he appeared in just 45 games, he recorded 34 points, which followed a season that saw him put up a career-high 64 points, a mark that was second among all NHL defensemen that season, trailing only Washington's Mike Green (73).

In his absence last season the Canadiens top power play options on their blue line were P.K. Subban, James Wisniewski (acquired from the Islanders in late December) and Roman Hamrlik. As a group they were good enough to help the team finish with the seventh best power play mark in the NHL (in previous years with Markov in the lineup on a regular basis they were at the top of the NHL). The problem for this season is Wisniewski and Hamrlik have since moved on to new teams, with Wisniewski going to Columbus and Hamrlik signing with the Capitals. If Markov is not ready for the start of the season that would place almost all of the workload on the 22-year-old -- and extremely talented -- Subban to lead the power play.

Photo: Getty Images

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @agretz on Twitter.

Comments
kkjyywlpo
Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 15, 2011 9:00 pm
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator




Since: Apr 7, 2011
Posted on: September 16, 2011 5:32 am
 

Markov's knee is still a concern

That moan you heard was from the entire Province of Quebec. They still have old reliable Jaro Spacek on the squad but he is defiantly not in Markov's class.


The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com