Canadiens centers Kirby Dach and Jake Evans both skated before practice today, relays TVA Sports’ Renaud Lavoie (Twitter link). Dach has been out for nearly a month with a lower-body injury, stalling the momentum on what had been a solid first year with Montreal as the 22-year-old has a career-high 35 points in 53 games this season. He is listed as out indefinitely. Evans, meanwhile, has missed almost two months with a lower-body injury of his own, one that is expected to keep him out for a couple more weeks. The 26-year-old has struggled prior to the injury, notching just 11 points in 43 games after putting up 29 in 73 contests last season.
More from the Eastern Conference:
- Devils forward Curtis Lazar has now been cleared to join the team, notes Ryan Novozinsky of the Newark Star-Ledger. The veteran was acquired from Vancouver at the trade deadline but had been waiting to get through work visa and immigration issues which have now been resolved. Lazar has joined up with New Jersey in Montreal but isn’t expected to be in the lineup just yet. The 28-year-old has five points and 124 hits in 45 games so far this season.
- A day after being recalled from the minors, the Maple Leafs have returned winger Alex Steeves to AHL Toronto, per the AHL’s transactions log. Steeves had been on an emergency recall but with John Tavares expected to play tonight, Toronto had to send one of the two players they brought up back to the Marlies. Steeves has 17 goals and 28 assists in 54 games so far this season in the minors, good for second on Toronto in scoring.
- Rangers winger Tyler Motte was listed as a game-time decision for today’s game against Buffalo but is expected to play, relays Mollie Walker of the New York Post (Twitter link). The 28-year-old suffered an upper-body injury earlier this month against his former team in Ottawa and has 10 points in 44 games this season. Motte’s return means that New York will have to return Jonny Brodzinski to AHL Hartford as the cap exemption permitting his recall will expire since the Rangers will once again have 12 healthy forwards.