Montreal Canadiens G Carey Price is taking a 30-day leave of absence from the team as they prepare for the start of the 2021-22 season, GM Marc Bergevin announced during a press conference on Thursday morning. Price will be gone at least one month to focus on his mental health and family. Bergevin says the absence “could be longer” but wasn’t sure how long. Price will enter the NHLPA Player Assistance Program.
Price helped lead the Habs to the Stanley Cup Final in 2021, putting together his best playoff run in his career. Price went 13-9 with a 2.28 GAA and .924 SV% for Montreal, which lost to the Tampa Bay Lightning in five games. Price is under contract through 2025-26 and makes $10.5 million annually.
With Price gone from the team, the Habs will likely roll with Jake Allen as their No. 1 goaltender to start the season. Montreal opens 2021-22 next Wednesday against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre. Behind Allen on the goalie depth chart is Samuel Montembeault, who is 24 and has only made 25 appearances in the NHL with the Florida Panthers.