It was announced Thursday that Habs forward Brendan Gallagher suffered a broken jaw during Game 5 on Wednesday night and he will need to undergo surgery to repair the injury. That surgery will force Gallagher to leave the Toronto bubble and miss the remainder of the team’s opening round series against the Flyers.
Gallagher suffered the injury with about five minutes remaining in the third period of Game 5 when Flyers defenseman Matt Niskanen delivered a cross-check to Gallagher’s face.
Gallagher appeared to be stunned by the cross-check and remained seated on the ice for a moment. As he began bleeding from the mouth, he appealed to the referees for a penalty call but no call was made. As he headed to the bench for repairs, it became increasingly apparent that Niskanen’s check did some real damage to Gallagher’s mouth.
Gallagher remained in the game and played the rest of the third period. The Canadiens won the game 5-3 to avoid elimination and cut the series deficit to 3-2.
If the Canadiens survive and are able to advance to the second round, it’s possible Gallagher could return to the team. He would need to undergo a quarantine period upon re-entering the bubble.
Gallagher’s absence could be significant loss for the Canadiens moving forward. He co-led the team in goals (22) this season despite only playing in 59 games. In Montreal’s three losses to Philadelphia in the series, the Canadiens have scored a combined total of one goal.