The Montreal Canadiens are getting back on the ice tonight as they'll take on the Toronto Maple Leafs in an exhibition game. 

They'll be without one veteran defenseman who opted out of the NHL's return to play. 

Karl Alzner decided to stay home with his family and considering he likely wasn't going to play anyways, it was probably the right decision to give some kids a chance to crack the lineup. 

We know that the Canadiens and Alzner have been trying to find a way to part ways, however Alzner's contract and down trending play makes it extremely hard. 

Both sides have been playing poker when it comes to a buy out but we've got another clue that Alzner's time in Montreal is likely over. 

Alexander Romanov has officially been given #27 as his jersey number, Alzner's number. 

Alzner wore #27 during his time with the Capitals and then had to switch to #22 when he joined the Canadiens because Alex Galchenyuk had #27, as soon as Chucky was moved out of town Alzner grabbed #27 immediately. 

This is a huge clue according to Arpon Basu of the Athletic. 

"I did find it intriguing, so I went to the source and reached out to Alzner. He was surprised to learn that Romanov had been assigned No. 27, so suffice it to say, he was not asked if it would be alright if his number was given to the Canadiens’ prized defence prospect. What does this mean? Likely nothing.

Romanov wore No. 26 in the KHL, a number currently worn by Jeff Petry with the Canadiens, so that’s not happening. I can’t speak to why the Canadiens decided to give Romanov No. 27 or if he asked for it and the Canadiens simply gave it to him, but I think it’s become clear that Alzner’s days in the Canadiens organization are numbered.

So, is Romanov’s number assignment a sign? Was it simply an oversight? I’m not sure. But the writing appears to be on the wall for Alzner’s departure, and this only makes that writing bolder."