Caps Russian Dmitry Orlov dropped some big news to CSN Washington’s Chuck Gormley after Tuesday’s practice.
The 23-year-old defenseman, who hasn’t played since breaking his wrist at the World Championship in May, says he could be ready to return in two weeks.
Defenseman Dmitry Orlov is making the team’s trip to California but don’t expect him to play. He said his wrist strength is steadily increasing and he’s able to withstand 90 pounds of pressure, up 20 pounds from two weeks ago.
“I’m feeling better with my grip but it’s hard to say how long it will be,” Orlov said. “I’m hoping two weeks.”
Depending on how rusty Orlov is, this could be a boon for the Caps third pairing.
Since replacing Nate Schmidt in the line-up, Jack Hillen has played poorly, bringing down Mike Green‘s otherwise sterling possession from 56.0 down to 47.1 percent.
Over the last two seasons, Orlov has fared much better than Hillen in shot-attempt differential relative to the rest of the team– despite playing tougher opponents and with fewer offensive zone starts. Here’s the Vollman player usage chart, generated by War on Ice:
Bottom red circle thing bad, top blue thing good. (Note: This is pretty zoomed in; Orlov still faces less tough competition than a top-pairing D-man.)
If Orlov is all-of-a-sudden back, the Capitals defensive depth might become instantly awesome again.
Such skill. So wow.
“He’s never been there,” Orlov said. “He’s really excited.”
Thanks to our friends over at Caps Reddit for first posting.
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