This is the photo that Alex Ovechkin sent to Caps team doctor Benjamin Shaffer on Thursday to make sure he was wearing his walking boot correctly. It was shown on Comcast SportsNet Thursday night, and then tweeted out by Ovechkin on Friday.
“It was our play off & my country!!” Ovechkin wrote. “I be ready to start train for next season very soon like normal )))!!”
Shaffer — who you might remember jumping up and down behind the bench after the Caps won Game 5 — would seem to agree.
“Fortunately it’s an inherently stable type of fracture pattern, so we don’t worry that it’s going to displace,” Shaffer told CSN’s Jill Sorenson. (Watch the video here.) “He’ll have to be immobilized for a period of time to let it heal, but no, we weren’t worried that he was going to put himself at risk by playing on it.”
Shaffer said Ovechkin would be in the boot for four weeks, adding that this type of injury is common in hockey.
“A study done several years ago showed that the average number of man-games lost was about 350 a year strictly due to ballistic missile equivalent of this vulcanized rubber hitting against the side of a skate,” he told Sorenson. “Any time you have a fracture in a foot it can be very painful, and there are some individuals who wouldn’t have been able to perform effectively. It varies enormously. We know Alex is very tough, and obviously he was effective and able to do what he needed to do.”
CSN also showed further footage of Ovechkin grimacing after blocking the shot that evidently fractured his foot. Here’s a screengrab. And here is Ovechkin lugging around the boot with his luggage.