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Montreal Canadiens

Weber Still Question Mark for Canadiens, Caufield and Kotkaniemi Out?

Questions surround the Montreal Canadiens heading into their Toronto series, including the status of Weber, Caufield and Kotkaniemi.

It appears the Montreal Canadiens will have their captain back for the start of the playoffs but it’s not a guarantee and there’s so certainly no telling how effective he’ll be when he gets there. Needless to say, the Canadiens will need Shea Weber, along with the returning Carey Price and Brendan Gallagher if they stand a chance against Toronto. Frankly, nearly everyone has the Canadiens losing this series in five or six games and their injury woes are a big part of the reason why.

Related: Blue Jackets Ask Seth Jones To Consider Immediate Contract Extension

Canadiens head coach Dominique Ducharme told reporters Saturday he’s “very confident” Weber will return for Game 1 against the Toronto Maple Leafs on Thursday, but other reports suggest Weber is still fighting an injury and he was not a part of the Canadiens practice on Sunday.

Weber skated alone prior to the Canadiens drills and he’s still been sporting a split on his hand. Elliotte Friedman reports that Weber has been using a different stick and shooting with the opposite hand during his practice time. All of that doesn’t suggest he’s close to 100 percent, but Friedman adds not to rule a guy like Weber out. If he can play, he’ll be there.

Eric Engels tweeted on Saturday, “We’ll see what develops over the next few days, after Shea Weber wasn’t at practice today, but the way Brendan Gallagher was just talking about him, I would expect he’ll be ready to go come Game 1.”

Montreal Canadiens Shea Weber

Other Canadiens News: Caufield and Kotkaniemi

There is a lot of buzz in Montreal that the Canadiens are making a huge mistake potentially not playing Jesperi Kotkaniemi and Cole Caufield for Game 1. Both were on the fifth lines in practice and wearing grey sweaters. From the fact the Canadiens will need to offensive horses to the valuable playoff experience that comes with putting these two in, many are in shock Ducharme would even fathom not playing both.

Specifically, some are pointing to the fact that Caufield was on the 5th line with 4 goals in 10 games while Eric Staal is on the 3rd line with 5 goals in 53 games is incredibly short-sighted.

Next: Maple Leafs’ Short Shots: Lack of Good Goalies & Status of Riley Nash

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