The Washington Capitals got some positive news on the injury front on Wednesday, as general manager Brian MacLellan shared an update on Tom Wilson.
Per MacLellan, Wilson is making progress in his recovery from ACL surgery and is still on pace to return roughly a quarter of the way into the 2022-23 campaign.
“I think he’s on schedule,” MacLellan said of No. 43. “He’s doing the therapy. He’s maybe even doing better than expected. But it’s still a December time frame, somewhere in there roughly.”
Wilson is coming off a career year that saw him dish a career-high 24 goals and 28 assists for 52 points in 78 regular-season games. The 28-year-old also earned an invite to the 2022 NHL All-Star Weekend in Las Vegas, breaking the century mark in the hardest shot competition and also scoring the fastest goal in ASG history. He then scored the series-opening goal in Game 1 against the Florida Panthers, but minutes into the game, tore his ACL while going for — and then trying to avoid — a hit on MacKenzie Weegar along the boards.
“It was kind of a weird, kind of freak thing. I went into the hit and tweaked my knee… I was doing everything I could to try to get back. It was just one of those things where I wasn’t able to,” Wilson explained on breakdown day.
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The 6-4, 220-pound winger had tried to do what he could to return and even got back on the ice, working with athletic trainer Jason Serbus to try and work his way back into the lineup somehow. However, the injury was too severe, and ultimately, he underwent surgery to repair the torn ACL on May 25.
New acquisition and former childhood rival Connor Brown is expected to fill in for Wilson in the meantime as he works to make a full recovery and pick up right where he left off.
“I need to get back to being the player that I am. That’ll happen,” Wilson said.