The Washington Capitals could finally see the debut of one of their major offseason acquisitions when they square off with the Columbus Blue Jackets on Saturday. Joel Edmundson, who the Capitals picked up via trade from the Montreal Canadiens in July, was a full participant at Friday’s practice.
Head coach Spencer Carbery would not confirm if Edmundson would be in the lineup against Columbus but indicated it could be a possibility. Edmundson has not played a single game yet this season after fracturing his hand during Training Camp.
“Edmundson will be a to be determined,” Carbery said. “He was a full participant. Did not have on a blue jersey so he took part in all of the battle drills. We’ll get the report post practice and we’ll see where he’s at.”
The rugged rearguard has been on long-term injured reserve since October 16 but is eligible to come off of it and rejoin the active roster whenever the Capitals deem him ready to do so. As things currently stand, the Capitals are carrying seven defensemen on their active roster and have both Edmundson and Trevor van Riemsdyk ready to be activated in the coming days.
TVR will play against Columbus and the only thing that might keep Edmundson from joining him is Carbery maybe wanting to give the veteran blueliner another practice or two. The rookie bench boss says the final decision is ultimately up to Edmundson though.
“I would say for a younger player, I would want to see him in a few more [practices] but in his case being a veteran guy that knows his body very well, I’ll leave that up to him,” Carbery said. “If he says he’s 100 percent and feels like he’s ready to go and ready to compete at the level required, that’ll be sort of his call on how he feels.”
Edmundson is no stranger to having to evaluate his own health status after spending the previous few years dealing with an unrelated back injury. Over the past two seasons, he has played in only 85 games.
The Capitals did run their defense pairings through drills at Friday’s skate and Edmundson was not part of the top-six group. When he does return and the Capitals defense corps is fully healthy, he’s expected to skate on the left side of the team’s third pairing.
Headline photo: Katie Adler/RMNB
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