The Canadiens are playing quite well, and Alexei Emelin might be enjoying his best stretch of the year. However it was announced this morning that the hard hitting defender will return to Montreal for personal reasons.
Alexei Emelin est rentré à Montréal hier pour des raisons familiales. / Alexei Emelin has returned to Montreal for family reasons.— Canadiens Montréal (@CanadiensMTL) March 31, 2014
Emelin leads the Habs in hits, with 172 on the season, which means his physical presence will undoubtedly be missed.
Michel Therrien will once again be forced to shuffle his defensive pairings. Who will slot into the Markov pairing? We don't quite know. Usually P.K. Subban and Andrei Markov form a great duo, however with the injury to Josh Gorges, Therrien will probably want to spread his reliable defensemen to the top two pairings.
As was the case with Plekanec, the personal reasons for which Alexei Emelin is returning to Montreal are private, and we won't be speculating here.
In the meantime here's a video to remind you what Emelin brings to the team: