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Carey Price out until at least early February, team says

BROSSARD, Quebec -- Montreal Canadiens coach Michel Therrien doesn't expect star goalie Carey Price to return before early February at the earliest from a lower-body injury.

"It would surprise us if he was back before the All-Star Game," Therrien said Friday. "We said it would be a minimum of six weeks -- a long-term absence. And when it's a question of long-term injury, it's difficult to say whether the return will take place on such a day. We have to follow the rehabilitation process and they tell me it's going well."

Price was injured during a game against the New York Rangers on Nov. 25 at Madison Square Garden.

Since the injury, the Canadiens are 6-12-1 and have allowed 53 goals.

Price has appeared in only 12 games this season, winning 10. He has a goals-against-average of 2.06.

"Our best player has played only 25 percent of the time this year," Therrien said. "As we all know, he's got an important role on our team. You can replace your No. 1 goalie for a short period of time but in the long run, it's tough."

Until Price's return, Therrien will carry on with Mike Condon and Ben Scrivens. The Canadiens acquired Scrivens from the Edmonton Oilers on Dec. 28 for Zack Kassian.