ARLINGTON, V.A. — The Washington Capitals got some good news and signs at practice on Wednesday, from positive injury updates to experimental line combinations.
The biggest news came on the Tom Wilson front, as the 28-year-old upgraded to a regular jersey. Wilson is testing his limits right now, but he is cleared to take hits now and it marks another step forward in his recovery from ACL surgery.
With Wilson in a contact jersey, and Nicklas Backstrom also still in a regular jersey after being cleared for contact last week, the Capitals put together a potential first-line combination that they haven't seen in a while: Alex Ovechkin-Backstrom-Wilson.
Ovechkin-Backstrom-Wilson trio getting work in. pic.twitter.com/PUlYTdmvMt
— Sammi Silber (@sammisilber) December 21, 2022
It is still early for both Backstrom and Wilson before they lace 'em up this season. Backstrom is recovering from hip resurfacing surgery, while Wilson is recovering from ACL surgery. So, don't expect to see this line right away next game, as Backstrom is still "ways away" and Wilson is just taking the next step forward.
In other injury news, T.J. Oshie did not practice as he continues to deal with an upper-body injury he suffered back on Saturday against the Toronto Maple Leafs. The 35-year-old was backchecking and pulled up in visible discomfort and soon left the game, using the boards to help him down the tunnel.
Alex Alexeyev (upper-body) also upgraded to a regular jersey, and Beck Malenstyn (finger surgery) is also in a normal sweater. Martin Fehervary (upper-body) took the ice for the entire practice but remains in a non-contact jersey. Nic Dowd did not skate due to a non-COVID illness but is expected to make the trip to Ottawa.