Cana­di­ens play­ers cool to Sub­ban deal

Team­mates not ex­actly cel­e­brat­ing


BROSSARD, Que. • It wasn’t ex­actly smiles and high fives in the Mon­treal Cana­di­ens dress­ing room on Tues­day over the news that P.K. Sub­ban’s con­tract dis­pute had fi­nally ended.

In fact, the mood was sur­pris­ingly chilly on a team that started the lock­out-de­layed NHL reg­u­lar sea­son 3-1- 0 with­out the flashy player who was their top de­fence­man last sea­son.

Sub­ban, 23, signed a twoyear $5.75 mil­lion con­tract Mon­day night and will re­join the club Wed­nes­day in Ot­tawa, although when he will play his first game has yet to be de­ter­mined.

Veteran rear­guard An­drei Markov re­fused to talk about it, say­ing “He’s not in the room yet, so let’s talk about it when he’s go­ing to be in the room.”

And Josh Gorges, Sub­ban’s reg­u­lar de­fence part­ner, steered around ques­tions on how he felt.

“To be hon­est, I’m glad that we don’t have to talk about it any more,” said Gorges. “It’s a non-is­sue now and we can fo­cus on get­ting ready to play the games with­out any­thing else to think about.”

Asked if he was glad to have Sub­ban back, Gorges said: “Like I said, it’s good that it’s over and done with and it’s set­tled.

“We don’t have to have th­ese talks in the morn­ing of what-if-this and what-ifthat. It’s over. We can fo­cus on play­ing hockey.”

Of­ten, when a player signs a con­tract, there are a flood of con­grat­u­la­tory tweets from team­mates, but this time, there were only a cou­ple from play­ers who were not on the team last sea­son.

But it ap­pears he has some work to do with his team­mates, even if gen­eral man­ager Marc Bergevin and coach Michel Ther­rien said they were de­lighted to have the tal­ented rear­guard back in the fold.

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