The Montreal Canadiens have been handed a tough blow. According to TSN’s Darren Dreger, Habs head coach Dominique Ducharme has reportedly tested positive for COVID-19 and is expected to be sidelined for at least 10 days.
While Dreger was first to inform fans with the upcoming report, more insiders have confirmed that Ducharme did test positive and will miss tonight's Game 3. He is said to be in quarantine for at least 10 days. Earlier on Friday, it was revealed that Ducharme had irregularities in his daily COVID-19 test. Further tests would be conducted ahead of Game 3 and have revealed positive.
We can't say what this means for the rest of the team and close contact.
According to Renaud Lavoie of TVA Sports, Ducharme is fully vaccinated. He received both doses of the Covid vaccine, and the Canadiens were strictly bubbled in Las Vegas, permitted to be only in their hotel and the rink.
We await the information on who will take over behind the bench for the Habs.
The series is now tied at a game apiece, and the Habs hold home-ice advantage in what becomes a best-of-five, with Game 3 set to go in front of a crowd of 3,500 at the Bell Centre. The Quebec government allowed more fans for this round as the Habs managed to get 2500 fans in the Bell Center in the first and second rounds of the postseason. This went up to an additional 1000 fans in the building, meaning 3500 fans will attend home contests for Game 3 and Game 4.
The same amount of fans will be allowed at the Bell Center for Game 6 if the series needs it.
In Sin City, the crowd has been huge and loud and it was certainly a shock for the Habs’ players, who travelled to the States for the first time since March 2020, to see so many fans in the building. Premier François Legault has said Canadiens players told him they don’t want to be at a disadvantage, considering Vegas has been playing in a full arena.
Let's just say now they have a much bigger disadvantage...