It looks like Alex Ovechkin will be just fine. The Washington Capitals captain is on the ice for warm-ups and will play against the New York Islanders on Saturday.
Ovechkin sat out of Thursday’s practice as a precaution while dealing with a lingering upper-body injury. He returned for the team’s full practice on Friday and said that he would see how he felt before deciding whether or not to dress against New York. The 36-year-old also added that it’s an ailment he has been dealing with for a bit now and that it has been a bit frustrating following a hot start to 2021-22.
“It doesn’t matter how season goes. You don’t want to get hurt, you don’t want to feel any pain in your body,” Ovechkin said. “It sucks that this happen… but nothing you can do, right?”
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It’s a great sign for Washington, who is looking to snap a four-game losing skid and is already missing Carl Hagelin and Dmitry Orlov.
Ovechkin has yet to miss a game this season and ranks third in the NHL in scoring with 24 goals and 52 points through 37 games so far, including two assists in his last four games. The Great 8 has also continued to make history this season, moving up to fourth on the NHL’s all-time goals list and sits at 754, just 12 goals away from tying Jaromir Jagr from third. On Dec. 31, he broke the NHL’s all-time power-play goals record with his 275th PPG in Detroit.
On Thursday, Ovechkin won the fan vote and earned the captaincy for Metropolitan Division for the 2022 NHL All-Star Game. He intends to take part in the star-studded weekend in Vegas to open February after abstaining for the last two seasons. However, he added that his priority is to get healthy.