The 2023-24 season is still several weeks away but we already have some Capitals-related injury news. Cam Allen, the Capitals’ fifth-round pick out in the 2023 NHL Draft, will undergo major shoulder surgery that will keep him out until the next calendar year.
Allen, 18, is heading into his third season in the OHL.
Guelph Storm general manager George Burnett announced the news on Wednesday.
General Manager George Burnett announced today that veteran defenseman Cameron Allen will undergo shoulder surgery on August 30th. Allen is expected to return to the Storm lineup in the new year. pic.twitter.com/kxwl8XVarJ
— Guelph Storm (@Storm_City) August 16, 2023
Allen is a right-shot defenseman who posted 25 points (5g, 20a) in 62 games for the Storm during the 2022-23 season. Allen was one of the draft combine’s top athletes, finishing in the top 10 of 11 different events.
Many analysts labeled Allen as a steal when the Caps selected him. NHL Central Scouting had him as the 46th ranked North American skater in their final rankings. Most draft outlets had the Toronto native ranked around 60 spots ahead of where he fell to the Caps in the fifth round.
Allen’s fall was surprising for a prospect once thought to be a first-round talent. The rearguard admitted he struggled with his mental health at times in junior and began working with Guelph’s mental performance consultant, Ashwin Patel, to turn the page.
“I put the most pressure on myself,” Allen told the Washington Post’s Bailey Johnson at the draft. “No one puts more pressure on me than me. I don’t know if that held me back. Ultimately, I think that’s why I’m sitting here today. That’s why I’ve gotten to this point — just the expectations I hold myself to. But I think there’s a healthy way to do it, and maybe I went over the top a little bit this year.
“Just working with people to be able to take some pressure off myself, really, and just be able to play my game,” Allen continued. “When I’m doing that, I’m at my best and having fun out there. I’m pretty hard on myself, but there’s a healthy way to do it and a way you can do it where you fulfill your best potential.”
Allen, who has captained Canada at both the Hlinka Gretzky Cup and U-18 World Junior Championship, was an attendee of the Caps’ summer development camp.
“I think getting a little confidence back is good for Cam,” Capitals assistant general manager Ross Mahoney said at that camp. “When you’re kind of projected to go maybe higher in the draft and you have a bit of a tough year and then you do get drafted where he did – I thought he did very well. It’s a bit of a confidence factor.”
Headline photo: Katie Adler/RMNB
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