The Washington Capitals are less than a month into the 2023-24 season and have already seen four different goaltenders dress for games. One major reason for that has been the injury issues that regular backup Charlie Lindgren has faced.
Those issues reared their ugly head again during Monday’s skate as Lindgren left Capitals practice early in the company of a trainer. Lindgren had just returned from injured reserve to his normal backup duties on Sunday night against the San Jose Sharks.
Charlie Lindgren was here for the start of practice, but has since left the ice. Saw him speaking with a trainer, but not sure exactly what happened.
— Katie Adler (@katieEadler) October 30, 2023
Lindgren did not return to the ice for the rest of practice. RMNB’s Katie Adler reports that the team says this injury is a new one and completely unrelated to Lindgren’s other problems from earlier in October.
The Capitals have yet to put together their full, expected tandem in net this season. Number one netminder Darcy Kuemper missed out on Opening Night due to the birth of his first child and Lindgren suffered his first injury during a morning skate just days later.
Clay Stevenson was initially recalled to back Kuemper up for a spell after that as the Hershey Bears’ regular starter, Hunter Shepard, was out with an illness to start the year. Shepard later swapped spots with Stevenson and made his NHL debut in a 6-4 win over the New Jersey Devils.
Shepard was returned to Hershey on Saturday and took down the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins a day later in a 24-save effort. The 2023 Calder Cup Finals MVP is expected to next be in action on Wednesday when the Bears host the Lehigh Valley Phantoms.
The Capitals don’t get back on the ice for a game until Thursday when the New York Islanders come to DC. Hershey is carrying three goalies with rookie Mitchell Gibson still on the roster after winning his professional debut against the Bridgeport Islanders.
Update (12:30 pm): Head coach Spencer Carbery told reporters after practice that Lindgren’s injury did not appear serious: “Should be all right, but had to leave.”
Headline photo: Alan Dobbins/RMNB
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