Canadiens need Price between the pipes in their march toward the postseason
It has been reported by multiple outlets that Price is back on the ice and practicing with the team. It has also been reported that there is a chance that the Canadiens' 26-year-old netminder could return to action this weekend.
Price has been out since returning from the Olympics after leading Team Canada to a Gold Medal. While the Canadiens are still in the thick of things, they need their number one goaltender to come back in order to help secure a spot in the ever competitive Eastern Conference.
For starters, Price is clearly the team's best player. In 48 games, Price is 26-17-5 with a 2.33 goals against average, a .925 save percentage and four shutouts.
When Price is in between the pipes, the Canadiens play with a lot more confidence than when they do with backup goaltender Peter Budaj in net. More often than not, Price will come up with the timely save when the team needs it the most and more often than not, the team wins when Price is in net.
Price is also coming off an Olympic tournament in which he not only won the Gold Medal, but he was also named the best goaltender of the tournament by the IIHF. This should give Price a lot of confidence as he looks to get his team into the playoffs.
Secondly, the Canadiens are coming up on the most important part of the season. With just about less than a month of games to play, the team needs to have their best players on the ice to not only get into the postseason, but to make some noise once in hockey's second season.
For the Canadiens, this means that Price needs to be in the net. Yes, the Canadiens are fourth in the East abut with games against the Colorado Avalanche, Columbus Blue Jackets, Boston Bruins, Detroit Red Wings (2), Toronto Maple Leafs, Chicago Blackhawks, and some other good hockey clubs, two points are going to be hard to come by.
Two points will be easier to come by if Price is in the net for this hockey club. Price now has a lot of big game experience under his belt and prior to the Olympic break, he was one of the hottest goaltenders in the league.
Lastly, as the face of the franchise, Price needs to be on the ice for his hockey club. Price is the team's most popular player and now is a time when the Canadiens are going to need the support of their fans as they make their march towards the postseason.
Again, the Canadiens are not drowning without Price, but if they want to get into the postseason and have a chance to compete for the Cup, they need Price to be healthy and in their net in order to succeed.