WASHINGTON, D.C. — Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin didn’t lace ’em up for Tuesday’s tilt with the New York Islanders, but he was in the building to support his club and take part in a pregame ceremony for his goal-scoring accomplishments. He also made the time to stop by the NBC Sports Washington booth and catch up with Al Koken prior to puck drop.
Ovechkin spoke to Koken about his upper-body injury on the NBCSW Broadcast, but wouldn’t reveal too much with regard to his status going forward.
“I feel pretty good. We’ll see,” Ovechkin said on the air. “I’m not going to say yes or no. But right now, we just make a decision to not play and we’ll see what’s going to happen next game.”
The 36-year-old was injured in the Capitals’ 4-3 shootout loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs back on Tuesday. In the third period, Ovechkin went on the breakaway, and while trying to go forehand to backhand, he tripped over Erik Kallgren’s stick and went awkwardly into the boards. He stayed down for a long moment before getting up and skating off under his own power. He did not return and was listed as day-to-day on Monday.
Head coach Peter Laviolette provided an update on Ovechkin on Tuesday, saying that he wouldn’t rush Ovechkin back and that he the team would continue to monitor his status. He wouldn’t confirm if No. 8 would be ready for Game 1 of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs.
“I want to say I hope [he’ll be ready for Game 1], but again, I don’t know,” Laviolette said. “It depends on how things progress with him. So it’s day-to-day right now.”
Tuesday marks the first game that Ovechkin has missed this season due to injury. He missed two others back in February and couldn’t attend the NHL All-Star weekend after testing positive for COVID-19. Washington has two games left in the regular season after this tilt with New York before the postseason kicks off on May 2.