WASHINGTON — "Johnny's tough as nails," Washington Capitals forward Tom Wilson wrote about his teammate, John Carlson, following Carlson's release from a local hospital on Saturday.
Carlson suffered a gruesome injury at the start of the third period of Friday's 4-1 win over the Winnipeg Jets when he took a Brenden Dillon shot to the face. The 32-year-old blueliner turned at the last minute and appeared to take the puck to the right side of his face near the cheekbone and ear and started bleeding profusely.
His teammates rushed to get him help from the trainers, who quickly tended to No. 74 and helped him down the tunnel. He was then taken to a hospital for "precautionary" evaluation. Carlson is now home and remains under the care of team doctors, but he is out indefinitely.
Wilson took to Instagram to share words of support for his longtime teammate, praising his resilience and echoing the Capitals' update on his status.
"Our guy [John Carlson] on the mend. Crazy sport we play, but Johnny is tough as nails," Wilson wrote on his story.
It's another major loss and injury that Washington will have to navigate, as the team is already missing another top-4 defenseman in Martin Fehervary. There are also several core players on the shelf, as Wilson himself is still working his way back from ACL surgery, while Nicklas Backstrom is doing the same following hip resurfacing surgery in the offseason. T.J. Oshie is also out with an upper-body injury, and Carlson was filling in for him in the bumper spot on the power play.
Through 30 games this season, Carlson has eight goals and 13 assists for 21 points, and he leads skaters in average time on ice (23:24 minutes).