Joel Ward was spotted by several reporters hobbling into Verizon Center on crutches a little after 5 p.m. Friday evening ahead of the Capitals’ matchup against Winnipeg, having suffered an apparent injury in the 2-1 overtime loss to Philadelphia.
It’s unclear when exactly Ward suffered the injury Thursday night. He finished with 13 minutes 22 seconds of ice time and completed the game. Ward wasn’t credited for blocking a shot, but given that those plays can occasionally go unnoticed by the scorekeepers, that doesn’t mean he didn’t take a puck off a foot or ankle.
Ward’s injury sheds a little more light on the Capitals’ decision to recall Cody Eakin from Hershey earlier in the day. Coach Dale Hunter told reporters during his pregame comments that the recall was because of the uncertain status of Alexander Semin, but it now appears Ward’s health played a role as well.
Ward, who had been a healthy scratch for performance reasons on Monday against Detroit, put together a strong outing in Philadelphia as he and the rest of the fourth line were largely successful in limiting the Flyers’ top lines.
A couple more quick notes before warmup:
— Hunter said that Semin, who missed Thursday’s game with a lower-body injury, will take warmups and is a gametime decision to face the Jets.
— It shouldn’t come as much of a surprise at this point, but Hunter wouldn’t divulge his starting goaltender for the evening. Check back closer to game time for the lineup.