Coach Bruce Boudreau said he expects Alex Ovechkin and Jason Arnott to practice with the rest of the team on Monday. The pair of injured top-six forwards skated at Kettler Capitals Iceplex today, making it the third consecutive day of workouts for both.
Ovechkin is out with an injury, the nature of which was not disclosed by the team. Arnott appears to have been forced out of the lineup over the past four games with a lower-body injury in addition to concerns about what sources said is a groin ailment. Arnott has a history of both knee and groin problems throughout his career.
Juggling line combinations or power-play and penalty-killing units is nothing new for the Capitals this season, but Boudreau reiterated during the morning skate at Scotiabank Place on Friday that he’d prefer to get injured players back as soon as possible.
“You’re hoping that maybe by the Toronto game that you’ve got everybody that’s going to start the playoffs, at least, being able to play,” Boudreau said. “It’s like every other team in the league. Sometime those options aren’t there and you’ve got to do what’s best for the player and the team in the end. If guys aren’t ready to play, they’re not ready to play.”
The game Boudreau mentioned is the 80th game of the regular season and will be on April 5, 10 days away from this contest against the Senators.
— While it appears as though Ovechkin and Arnott are on track to return at some point next week, Boudreau said yesterday that the team will know on Monday if Mike Green, who hasn’t skated with the team since suffering a concussion on Feb. 25, will be back in the mix before the end of the season.
— If what is holding Eric Fehr out of the lineup in Ottawa is indeed the continuation of his shoulder injury, you can add him to the imix of players the Capitals are trying to have back in the fold as soon as possible with the regular season quickly slipping away.