Montreal Canadiens defenseman Alexei Emelin underwent reconstructive surgery Tuesday to repair the anterior cruciate and medial collateral ligaments in his left knee. Recovery is expected to take six months.
Emelin was injured in an April 6 game against the Boston Bruins, depriving the Canadiens of one of their top young blueliners for the stretch run and in their five-game loss to the Ottawa Senators in the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals.
The 27-year-old was in his second NHL season, which finished with him compiling three goals, 12 points and a plus-2 rating in 38 games.
It's a tribute to him, and everything he's done and deserved is coming to fruition tonight with his jersey in the rafters. He's going to be a first-ballot Hall of Famer. And I said today, if he's not, take my stuff out. If he doesn't deserve to be in there first ballot, no one does. Except for (Wayne) Gretzky, I guess.
— Hockey Hall of Fame member Brett Hull on former teammate Mike Modano, whose No. 9 was retired by the Dallas Stars on Saturday