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Ovechkin Travels With Capitals To New York For Final Games, Status TBD

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Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin

The Washington Capitals got a seemingly positive sign on Wednesday, as captain Alex Ovechkin traveled with the Capitals to New York for the final two games of the season.

Per the team (via NHL.com’s Tom Gulitti), Ovechkin made the trip but remains day-to-day with an upper-body injury. It’s unclear whether or not he will play in either of the final two regular-season games. Washington first faces the Islanders on Thursday then heads to Manhattan for a tilt with the Rangers on Friday.

Ovechkin was injured in the third period of Sunday’s 4-3 shootout loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs. While trying to go forehand-to-backhand on the breakaway, the 36-year-old tripped over goaltender Erik Kallgren’s stick and went awkwardly into the boards. He appeared to hurt his arm and stayed down before getting up and skating off under his own power.

The Great 8 took part in the team photo Monday and was on the ice in a suit and time for a pregame ceremony prior to puck drop against New York on Tuesday, but he did not play in the eventual 4-1 loss to New York.

“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.”

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Ovechkin told NBCSW on air on Tuesday that he wasn’t sure if he would be ready for the playoffs, but that he was feeling good.

“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.”

Through 77 games this season, Ovechkin leads the Capitals with 50 goals and 90 points. He sits third on the NHL’s all-time goals list with 780 goals and is 20 away from 800, 22 away from passing Gordie Howe and 115 away from breaking Wayne Gretzky’s all-time record. Ovechkin also tied Gretzky and Mike Bossy for the most 50-goal seasons by a player in NHL history (9).

Washington will either end up playing the Florida Panthers or New York Rangers in the first round of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs. The Capitals (44-24-12) currently sit in the second Wild Card spot and are one point behind the Pittsburgh Penguins for third in the Metro.

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