Canadiens see red over hit

MIKE ZEISBERGER, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 8:46 AM ET

Just when you thought Mikhail Grabovski could not be any more despised in la belle province, he has found a way to be exactly that.

Already assuming the role as Public Enemy No. 1 among Montreal Canadiens fans, Grabovski further fanned the hatred of Habs supporters and players alike after reports last night suggested his controversial hit on Andrei Markov Saturday will sideline Markov for at least three weeks, meaning he will be unavailable for most, if not all, of the first round of the playoffs should the Canadiens qualify.

RIPPED

Irked Canadiens defenceman Mike Komisarek yesterday ripped into Grabovski for his actions, insinuating Grabovski is a coward.

"You are enraged and you are pissed off that a player like that, when the game is out of hand, runs one of your top players like that," Komisarek told reporters in Montreal. "He knows (Markov) is in a vulnerable position. There's no need for that.

"Early on in the game, there was a scrum and Grabovski wouldn't even look you in the eye. (He) runs away from any confrontation with his tail between his legs. So for him to hit Markie like that, it's something you don't like to see."

The hit in question came in the third period of the Habs' lopsided 6-2 victory over the Leafs at the Air Canada Centre Saturday. While the check itself did not seem dirty, it did come late, something the Canadiens immediately took notice of.

According to RDS, Markov, who suffered an injury to his left knee, likely will not be back until the end of the month while Mathieu Schneider, also injured against the Leafs, probably needs season-ending shoulder surgery. Both players underwent x-rays and MRIs yesterday.

Markov and Schneider were the top two point men on the Canadiens' power play, which really had picked up as of late.

This is not the first time Grabovski has found controversy during a game against the Canadiens, his former team.

Earlier this season, Grabovski was suspended three games for shoving linesman Scott Cherrey during a 6-2 victory by the Habs at the Bell Centre Jan. 8. Grabovski was feuding with the Canadiens' Sergei Kostitsyn and was attempting to get at the Habs forward when contact was made with Cherrey.


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