PITTSBURGH -- Canadiens defenseman Andrei Markov was helped off the ice with an undisclosed lower body injury after being rammed by Penguins forward Matt Cooke during the first period of the Eastern Conference playoff game on Friday night.
Markov was skating toward a loose puck in the corner when Cooke leveled him with a hit that was not penalized at 11:46. The Canadiens said he wouldn't return to the game.
Markov's glove flew high as he dropped to the ice. As several players held and grabbed each other at mid-ice, Markov remained down for several minutes before being helped to a runway leading to the Montreal dressing room.
Pittsburgh ended up with a power play because two Canadiens drew roughing penalties.
The Canadiens didn't seem confident Markov would be ready by Sunday.
"It's a huge loss for us," Canadiens defenseman Hal Gill said.
On March 7, Cooke's blindside hit badly injured Bruins forward Marc Savard, who sustained a severe concussion.