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Carey Price to take leave of absence from Canadiens

Montreal goalie will be away from team for minimum 30 days. GM Marc Bergevin says it “could be longer.”

Carey Price #31 of the Montreal Canadiens and Nikita Kucherov #86 of the Tampa Bay Lightning shake hands following the Lightning’s victory over the Montreal Canadiens in Game Five of the 2021 NHL Stanley Cup Final at the Amalie Arena on July 07, 2021 in Tampa, Florida. The Lightning defeated the Canadiens 1-0 to take the series four games to one. Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

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.

The Canadiens are 50/1 to win the Stanley Cup on DraftKings Sportsbook heading into the final week of preseason. Price is also listed at 14/1 to win the Vezina Trophy.