Carey Price Injury: Updates on Canadiens Star's Lower Body and Return

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistFebruary 26, 2014

RALEIGH, NC - FEBRUARY 08: Carey Price #31 of the Montreal Canadiens crouches in the crease to defend the net during their NHL game against the against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena on February 8, 2014 in Raleigh, North Carolina.  (Photo by Gregg Forwerck/NHLI via Getty Images)
Gregg Forwerck/Getty Images

Updates from Saturday, Mar. 15

The Canadiens' official Twitter feed reported some good news regarding Price's status for Saturday's game:

Updates from Friday, Mar. 14

The Canadiens' official Twitter feed has the latest on Price's status:

Dave Stubbs of The Gazette passed on some of head coach Michel Therrien's thoughts on his injured keeper:

Updates from Tuesday, Mar. 11

DJ Bean of has an update on Carey Price's rehab:

Updates from Sunday, Mar. 9

Dave Stubbs of The Montreal Gazette reports when Carey Price is hoping to return:

Updates from Tuesday, Mar. 4

John Lu of TSN has the latest on Carey Price's status:

Updates from Friday, Feb. 28

John Lu of TSN has the latest on Price: 

Original Text

Goaltender Carey Price appeared prime for the NHL's stretch run after leading Canada to Olympic gold in Sochi, Russia, but the Montreal Canadiens backstop will have to overcome an injury first.   

According to the Habs' official Twitter account, Price is expected to miss at least the next two games with a lower-body ailment:

The exact nature of the injury wasn't disclosed, but Mike Morreale of is reporting that Price left the Canadiens' Wednesday morning skate with apparent leg discomfort:

Price will be scratched from Montreal's first game back following the Olympic break on Wednesday night against the Detroit Red Wings. To make up for his absence, goalie Dustin Tokarski has been recalled from the AHL:

Dave Stubbs of The Montreal Gazette reported that Canada coach Mike Babcock was unaware of any injury the keeper may have been carrying when the Olympics began. 

Marc Antoine Godin of La Presse in Montreal also noted that Sidney Crosby was aware of Price's ailment:

The Canadiens also boast netminder Peter Budaj, who has been fantastic in limited action this season. Budaj has a goals against average of 1.97, and he is more than capable of filling in for Price over the short term.

Price was absolutely lights out at the 2014 Winter Olympics. He went undefeated and posted a 0.59 goals against average along with an incredible save percentage of .971. Price made no mention of an injury upon his return to Montreal on Monday, although he did discuss the mental toll that competing in the Olympics took on him, per The Canadian Press via CBC Sports.

"Emotionally, it was a very trying time," Price said. "I'm just taking the next couple of days to relax and unwind. I've always been good at focusing on my immediate goals and, when I come back, I'll be ready."

It is unclear how long Price was hampered by the injury during the Olympic tournament, but it didn't seem to hamper him during crunch time. Price shut out the rival Americans in the semifinals and he followed that up with another clutch shutout against Sweden in the gold-medal game.

Most goalies dream of playing at that level while fully healthy, but it's difficult to blame the Habs for taking a cautious approach since Price will be leaned upon heavily during the team's playoff push.

Montreal currently holds the third and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference's Atlantic Division with 70 points. It has a game in hand on the Toronto Maple Leafs who also have 70 points, so it will be an interesting battle moving forward.

The Canadiens can absolutely thrive without Price for a couple games, but they aren't legitimate contenders if this injury is worse than expected. Biting the bullet now to prevent further injury is a wise strategy, and it could pay big dividends come playoff time.  


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