Fresh from a week off, the Habs players are hitting the ice in Brossard right now. Claude Julien had said that he did not expect to get his injured players back before the All-Star break so many fans were expecting to see some new old faces on the ice this afternoon but they'll apparently have to wait some more:
Still according to Engels, the 3 injured players should skate after the team's practice. Meanwhile on the ice, the lines are as follows:
So, it looks like Weal is still outside looking in and that Dale Weise will in fact get to play his 500th NHL career game, good for him! Now, with Gallagher still not ready to get back in the line-up, I'd think it's time to be realistic. Gally is the heart and soul of this team and without him, an unlikely push for the playoffs becomes near impossible. This is the guy who's out there scoring the important goals and lighting a fire Under his teammates. Perhaps, this is a blessing in disguise and will make Marc Bergevin see sense. There's no need to delay the inevitable, it's time to face the facts: there will be no playoffs in Montreal for the third year in a row and for the 4th time in 5 years. The Habs have not skated in the postseason since Radulov and Markov departed...doesn't that seems like ages ago? Right now the Canadiens have a 3.4% chance to make the postseason and a 6.5% chance of winning the first overall pick.
Now I know, professional hockey players are a proud bunch and they will not be losing on purpose but to be honest, it's going to be hard to be upset by losses from now on since this is probably what this team needs. Remember though, finishing last doesn't guarantee the first pick, it only gives you an 18.5% chance of claiming the top prize. If it's in the cards, the Habs will win the lottery wherever they finish and we'll get to hear all the conspiracy theories that it was rigged so they'd get the first pick at home. Right now, that doesn't sound like such a bad thing to put up with does it?