The Montreal Canadiens’ AHL affiliate, the Laval Rocket, announced today that defenseman Gianni Fairbrother will be out for the entirety of the 2022-23 AHL season due to a knee injury. Fairbrother suffered that knee injury in a preseason contest against the Belleville Senators, and now faces a long road to recovery just as his season was about to begin.
Fairbrother, 22, was a third-round pick of the Canadiens at the 2019 draft, getting selected 77th overall. Fairbrother made a name for himself in his draft season as one of the more physical, intimidating defensemen in the WHL. The hard-hitting Fairbrother signed a three-year entry-level deal with the Canadiens last year and played in 25 games for the Rocket, scoring seven points to go along with 46 penalty minutes. This is unfortunate news for Fairbrother, but the hope will be that he can respond well to his recovery process and return in the fall of 2023 ready to have a competitive preseason and training camp.
Now, for some other notes from across the NHL:
- After announcing that Blake Wheeler would no longer serve as the team’s captain last month, the Winnipeg Jets have settled on a leadership core for the 2022-23 season. As reported by TSN’s John Lu, Mark Scheifele, Adam Lowry, and Josh Morrissey were all named alternate captains for the Jets. Both Morrissey and Scheifele were alternate captains last season, while this year will mark the first year where Lowry will wear a letter since he was the captain of the WHL’s Swift Current Broncos in 2013.
- Another team announced some captaincy news today. The Abbotsford Canucks, the AHL affiliate of the Vancouver Canucks, announced that forward Chase Wouters has been named the first captain in the team’s history. While Wouters might strike some as an odd choice due to his age, (he’ll turn 23 in February) he actually has extensive leadership experience. Wouters was the captain of the WHL’s Saskatoon Blades from 2018-19 to 2020-21. In that time frame, the Blades had more wins than losses in each year Wouters wore the “C,” so the Canucks will hope that his leadership can bring similar to success to their AHL affiliate.