In the month of January, Canadiens fans finally found somebody other than Carey Price for whom to vote in their three star selections. After Price had won Canadiens ‘Player of the Month’ honours the first three months of the season, Max Pacioretty got the Molson Cup nod for the month of January. In eleven January games, Pacioretty scored a team leading seven goals including two game-winners. He added three assists. Pacioretty finished ahead of linemates David Desharnais and Erik Cole in the January voting.
Centre Andreas Engqvist was returned to the Hamilton Bulldogs after another one game stint and Louis Leblanc recalled. Leblanc, who turned 21 last Thursday, will be in the lineup against New Jersey Thursday night. In his earlier 14 game stretch with the Canadiens , Leblanc scored two goals and five points.
Ryan White again practiced on the fourth line with Mathieu Darche and Yannick Weber but is not ready to return. He’ll be evaluated again Friday. The Canadiens currently have five players on their injury list; White, Andrei Markov, Brian Gionta, Petteri Nokelainen and Travis Moen. With 32 games remaining in the season, the Canadiens will surpass last year’s season’s total injury count of 236 man-games lost.
For the second straight day, Markov worked his rehabilitating knee in a solo session on the second ice surface. He increased his workout from fifteen to twenty minutes.
Wednesday’s practice alignment
Bourque – Plekanec – Gomez
Blunden – Eller – Kostitsyn
Darche – White – Weber
From Canadiens Communications
MONTREAL (February 1, 2012) – Max Pacioretty is the Molson Cup recipient for the month of January.
Pacioretty succeeds Carey Price, who earned the honour for each of the first three segments of the Molson Cup in 2011-12. He earned the Molson Cup for the first time in his career. Pacioretty was twice selected first star of the game (January 7 against Tampa Bay and January 15th versus the New York Rangers. He finished ahead of teammates Erik Cole and David Desharnais.
In 11 games in January, the 23-year old forward ranked third on the team in scoring with 10 points (7-3-10), including a team-high of seven goals. He scored two game winning goals, and maintained a +5 plus-minus differential.
Max Pacioretty will be presented with the Molson Cup during a short ceremonye prior to Saturday’s matinee game against the Washington Capitals at the Bell Centre.