eller injuryPlayers refuse to use injuries an excuse for losing simply because when it comes to the playoffs every team has them to varying degrees.

But, there is a tipping point and the Canadiens went over the edge again.  Whether they would have changed the ultimate outcome of the Senators series is open for lengthy debate, but they clearly had effect on the length of the quarterfinal.

Up to April 6th the Canadiens had been remarkably free of injuries.  They beat the Bruins on that night and their record was 25-8-5.   But in the game, Alexei Emelin suffered the partially torn knee ligament that finished his season and without him, including playoffs, the Canadiens finsihed the season 4-6-0 and with playoffs it became 5-10-0.

And in the playoffs  –

….Lars Eller – Missed four playoff games with concussion, dental fractures & broken nose

….Brian Gionta – Missed three playoff games with torn bicep muscle.

….Ryan White – Collapsed lung – missed two playoff games.

….Carey Price – Missed final playoff game with second degree MCL left knee sprain.

….Brandon Prust – Dislocated rib – shoulder separation.  Missed game five.

….Max Pacioretty – Suffered separated shoulder in Game One.  Played entire  series.

The season hasn’t ended for Tomas Plekanec and Alex Galchenyuk.  Plekanec is headed for Stockholm to join the Czech Republic at the World Hockey Championship.  It will be his eighth appearance at the World Championship.    Milwaukee-born Galchenyuk will be joining the USA entry at the Helsinki portion of the tournament.  Canadiens prospect Danny Kristo is already a regular member of Team USA.   This will be Galchenyuk’s second trip to a World Tournament in 4 1/2 months.  He collected a Jr. World Championship gold medal in early January.

Neither is expected to arrive in time for Sunday’s preliminary round games.  The Czechs are scheduled to play Team Canada and the USA goes up against Germany.

Norris Trophy candidate P.K. Subban has not been invited to be part of Team Canada.  General manager Steve Yzerman stated Saturday he has no intention of adding to his roster.   Swiss international Raphael Diaz also has received no invitation, at least not yet.  Swiss National Team coach Sean Simpson told reporters Saturday in Stockholm that he is waiting for clearance from the Canadiens before making considering an invitation“The final decision lies with me,” he said.   he said.  Yannick Weber, who played in only six games with the Canadiens all season, is definitely a non-candidate.

With a five game winning streak, including victories over Sweden, Canada and the Czech Republic, Switzerland is the sensation of the tournament.  The last time a Swiss team won five in a row at a major hockey tournament was a six game streak at the 1948 Winter Olympics at St. Moritz.  .