On the injury front, the Montreal Canadiens are about to take two steps forward — and one big step back.
Just as star forward Alex Galchenyuk (knee) and veteran defenceman Andrei Markov (lower body injury) are nearing their return to the ice, it was announced Friday that sparkplug Brendan Gallagher will likely miss at least eight weeks with his second significant hand injury in two seasons.
Gallagher was hit on his left hand by teammate Shea Weber’s shot in a win over Dallas on Wednesday night, after which he returned to Montreal for evaluation. The evaluation revealed a fracture and he underwent surgery on Thursday.
The first line winger, who has 18 points in 39 games, missed six weeks in 2015-16 after two of his fingers were broken on the same hand.
On Thursday, the injury depleted Habs called up wingers Nikita Scherbak and Sven Andrighetto from the St. John’s IceCaps.