After three months of off-ice recovery, Washington Capitals forward Anthony Mantha is making progress on the road to recovery and could be back on the ice soon.
The 26-year-old played just 10 games for the Capitals, dishing two goals and six points before an unfortunate play against Florida on Nov. 4 led to the forward suffering a shoulder injury. He had to have surgery to fix the injury and has been on the long-term injured reserve since. Though he has not skated with the team, he has been around the practice facility.
According to head coach Peter Laviolette, Mantha is making strides as he continues to work toward getting back to practice.
“He’s progressing. He’s progressing too. And so, hopefully we see him out on the ice at some point, maybe not with us, but just getting back out on the ice and getting into a rhythm with what he’s doing out there. And so everybody’s in a different situation, there’s a lot of question marks that remain… there have been some constant thgs and I think it’s been really good.”
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Washington acquired Mantha from the Detroit Red Wings in exchange for draft picks and Jakub Vrana in a blockbuster trade at the trade deadline last season. He played 14 regular-season games to close out 2020-21 with the Capitals, picking up four goals and four assists. He then played a strong game in the postseason, and led the charge on offense with a team-leading 88 shot attempts in the first-round series against the Boston Bruins.
Mantha’s return will be a welcome sight for Washington, who have seen a dip in their 5-on-5 scoring of late and have continued to struggle on the man advantage.
In 326 career NHL games between Washington and Detorit, the 6-5, 234-pound forward has picked up 101 goals and 208 points.