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Canadiens' Carey Price Could Miss 2022-23 Season Because of Knee Injury, GM Says

Erin WalshAugust 18, 2022

David Kirouac/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price is expected to miss the entire 2022-23 season because of a knee injury that has not responded well to treatment, general manager Kent Hughes told reporters Thursday.

Hughes added that it's unlikely Price can return to action by just rehabbing his knee and that an operation would be required. The veteran netminder will likely be placed on long-term injured reserve, per Eric Engels of Sportsnet.

Price underwent offseason knee surgery in the summer of 2021 and, while recovering, announced that he had voluntarily entered the NHL and NHLPA's player assistance program in October:

"Over the last few years, I have let myself get to a very dark place and I didn't have the tools to cope with that struggle. I made the decision to enter a residential treatment facility for substance abuse. Things had reached a point that I realized I needed to prioritize my health for both myself and for my family. Asking for help when you need it is what we encourage our kids to do, and it was what I needed to do."

Due to a number of setbacks in his recovery, Price missed all but five games of the 2021-22 season. He went 1-4-0 in his return to the lineup with a 3.63 goals-against average and .878 save percentage.

Since putting pen to paper on an eight-year, $84 million contract in July 2017, Price has not lived up to expectations, posting a 91-86-24 record with a 2.77 GAA, .908 save percentage and 10 shutouts in 203 games, including 200 starts.

Through the first 10 years of his career, he was one of the best in the NHL, posting a 270-175-55 record with a 2.40 GAA, .920 save percentage and 39 shutouts in 509 games (500 starts).

Price also won the 2014-15 Vezina Trophy as the NHL's best goaltender, won the 2014-15 Hart Trophy as the MVP and was also selected to the All-Star team in 2014-15. He hasn't finished among the top three in Vezina Trophy voting since the 2016-17 campaign.

The British Columbia native has four more years on his contract with an average annual value of $10.5 million. Placing him on LTIR will give the Canadiens more salary cap flexibility, which is greatly needed following the acquisition of Sean Monahan from the Calgary Flames.

According to CapFriendly, the Habs are currently over the salary cap by $6.1 million.

With Price expected to be sidelined in 2022-23, the Canadiens will have to rely on a combination of Jake Allen and Samuel Montembeault in goal.

Allen started 35 games for Montreal last season and posted a 9-20-4 record with a 3.30 GAA and .905 save percentage. Montembeault, meanwhile, started 30 games for the Habs and posted an 8-18-6 record with a 3.77 GAA and .891 save percentage.

Montreal finished the 2021-22 season with a 22-49-11 record and the team isn't expected to compete for a playoff spot this coming season either despite selecting Juraj Slafkovsky first overall in the 2022 NHL draft.

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