“He’s coming with us,” Trotz said. “The trainers worked some magic.”
Trotz said the Capitals will not recall an additional defenseman. Blue-liner Taylor Chorney will be with the team in case Carlson can’t play.
Carlson left practice early Thursday afternoon, and the team said he was being evaluated for a lower-body injury. Trotz indicated Carlson’s ailment was not serious, saying that he just needed “a little maintenance” after Wednesday night’s game against the Penguins. Carlson played 20:42 in Friday’s game against Chicago.
On a Penguins power play in the third period Wednesday night, Carlson blocked a Kris Letang shot with his leg, and when asked if that was related to him leaving practice early Thursday, Trotz said “it’s related from playing in a hockey game.”
Carlson hasn’t missed a game this season, and he leads the team in time on ice per game with 23:17, playing on the first power play and penalty kill. With him not on the ice, Matt Niskanen manned the top power play unit, and defenseman Nate Schmidt was on the second unit Sunday afternoon against Philadelphia.
Carlson missed 26 games last season with a broken ankle. He has five goals and 20 assists this season and has skated on a top defense pairing with Karl Alzner.