The Washington Capitals could be without captain Alex Ovechkin for the seventh time this season when they take on the Florida Panthers on Saturday night in DC. Ovechkin did not take the morning skate with the rest of his teammates.
The Athletic’s Tarik El-Bashir reports that The Great Eight is dealing with an upper-body injury and is officially a game-time decision against Florida.
The Caps will play the Panthers after losing their fifth game in a row on Thursday to the Montreal Canadiens by a lopsided final score of 6-2. Ovechkin played 21:49 of ice time in that loss which was the second-highest total on the team behind only John Carlson (24:18).
Ovechkin only recorded one shot on goal in Montreal and has just five total shots in his last four games. That is incredibly uncommon for him and it’s the first time this entire season that he has gone back-to-back outings with just one shot on target. In those four games, he has recorded two assists but zero goals.
Without their leading goal and point scorer this season, the Caps have been blown out of the water. They are 0-6 without him and have been outscored 27-12 in those games.
Per El-Bashir, the Caps will also be without forward Anthony Mantha for the second straight game. He is day-to-day with a lower-body injury. The team recalled Beck Malenstyn from the Hershey Bears on Friday to aid with Mantha’s absence.
As things stand, if Ovechkin does not dress against Florida the Caps will once again have just 11 healthy forwards and six healthy defensemen as they did in Montreal. TJ Oshie and Trevor van Riemsdyk are also injured, did not travel with the team to play the Habs, and have not played since March 30.
Charlie Lindgren was the first netminder off the ice at the morning skate. He’ll start for the first time since March 21.
Puck drop is at 7 pm ET.
Headline photo: Alan Dobbins/RMNB
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