The Hershey Bears announced Friday afternoon that defenseman Alex Alexeyev has been re-assigned to the AHL team by the Washington Capitals on a long-term injury conditioning loan.
Alexeyev underwent a surgical labral repair to his left shoulder in June and has been with the Bears since October 2 for rehab purposes. This news means that he is healthy enough to practice and begin playing games. Long-term conditioning loans can last a max of six days or three games in the AHL with some getting extensions of two more games.
The “long-term” nature of the loan basically just means he does not need to be activated before being sent down and will not appear on the Capitals’ roster while he plays in the AHL.
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— Hershey Bears (@TheHersheyBears) October 28, 2022
In 2021-22 for Hershey, Alexeyev appeared in 68 games, recording 19 points (1g, 18a). It was his third season in Hershey since being drafted by the Caps in the first round of the 2018 NHL Draft. He has tallied 49 points (6g, 43a) in 138 career AHL games over those three seasons.
This is not an official assignment to the AHL as the 22-year-old defenseman would need to pass through waivers for that to occur. He will likely join the Capitals roster when the loan ends which is where another issue will crop up.
The Capitals’ 23-man roster is full. That means a few things. Either someone needs to be traded to make room for Alexeyev, Alexeyev needs to be risked on waivers like Axel Jonsson-Fjallby and Brett Leason were, or someone else on the roster needs to be sent to Hershey. The main candidates for the latter option would likely be Connor McMichael (waivers exempt) or Joe Snively (waiver eligible) as neither is currently playing regularly for the Caps in the NHL.
Given the recent losses of young talent with nothing coming back in return (AJF, Leason, Ilya Samsonov), the Caps should be careful not to go through that same process with Alexeyev.
The Bears play Friday night in Hartford and the Russian blueliner will be eligible to make the lineup for the game.
Headline photo: Elizabeth Kong/RMNB
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