Andrei Markov has been cleared for full contact practice with his teammates for the first time in a year.
Markov suffered his latest knee injury against Carolina November 13th of last year and underwent ACL-MCL reconstructive surgery December 8th.
Markov travelled with the team to Raleigh this afternoon and will skate with the team tomorrow morning and again Thursday and Friday in Philadelphia.
Earlier there was talk of Markov being game-ready when the Canadiens return from their early December west coast trip. That would make it December 6th against Columbus. Sounds logical to me.
After a year-long absence from game conditions, Markov’s timing is assuredly going to be off. Although it’s unlikely, there is the option of sending him to Hamilton on a two week conditioning stint. Under terms of the collective bargaining agreement, Markov would first have to agree to the move and beforehand, he would have to be placed on the 23 player active roster. During his time in the minors his salary would be counted against the cap.
……Both Hal Gill and Andrei Kostitsyn made the trip with Markov and the rest of the team to Carolina. Gill is a probable starter tomorrow night against the Hurricanes. Kostitsyn’s groin injury will keep him out until Saturday. He’s already missed eight games. Jaroslav Spacek remained in Montreal.
…..Today’s Practice Lines