Canadiens’ Fast Start Gives Way to Long Skid

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Just after the Canadiens’ Max Pacioretty was pushed toward the bench after losing a blade Thursday, the Kings scored.

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Harry How/Getty Images

On the day the Montreal Canadiens completed a winless three-game trip through California, the biggest news for the franchise came almost 3,000 miles away. Hours before the Canadiens lost, 3-2, to the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday, their star goaltender Carey Price, the reigning Hart Trophy winner as the N.H.L.’s most valuable player, spoke at the team’s practice complex in Montreal.

Out with an unspecified lower-body injury since late November, Price insisted that he was confident he would play again this season, although he would not specify a timeline for his return. That uncertainty surrounding Price, and even the nature of his injury, encapsulated the season for a franchise that in November had fans discussing the possibility of a 25th Stanley Cup victory, which would be the club’s first since 1993.

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