Brad Marchand, Mattias Ohlund

Mattias Ohlund gets both knees scoped, could miss 2 months

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When it comes to Mattias Ohlund, there are at least two things uglier than his contract: his knees. The aging Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman hopes to put those problems behind him, as he decided to get both of them scoped, according to Joe Smith of the St. Petersburg Times.

The expected window of recovery is from six to eight weeks, although considering the fact that he’ll need to rehab both knees, it could be a fluid situation. The Lightning decided to put him on the injured reserve last week.

Honestly, the layoff might be worth it if the Swedish blueliner can regain at least some of his mobility. It was pretty obvious that he missed a step or five last season, judging by the fact that he averaged four less minutes per game than in 2009-10.

Deep down, the Bolts might hope for him to retire, but they could eventually bury his $3.6 million cap hit in the minors. He’ll get a chance to prove he belongs with the big club before that happens, though – even if it’s unclear when he’ll come back.

GM says Blue Jackets are ‘off the rails’ right now

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On Monday, PHT discussed the Columbus Blue Jackets’ troubling start, even if it felt like it may be too early to raise concerns.

Apparently Blue Jackets management is a little shaken by the second 0-3-0 start in franchise history, however.

Columbus GM Jarmo Kekalainen shared his shock and dismay with the Columbus Dispatch’s Aaron Portzline on Tuesday.

“I’m surprised how, in just five days, we’ve gone from a very confident group to something that’s the opposite of that,” Kekalainen told The Dispatch on Tuesday. “Our confidence, our game … it’s off the rails right now.

Maybe losing to the Buffalo Sabres stings a little bit extra?

Kekalainen said “there’s no excuse for how we played in Buffalo,” pointing out that every team in the NHL is a “good team.”

Indeed, just about every squad boasts some dangerous weapons if they catch an opponent sleeping.

Portzline goes deeper on Columbus’ recent history of stumbling out of the gate, but consider the foreboding stretch coming up.

Next four games: Three out of four at home
Eight games following that: Seven out of eight on the road.

As you can see, winter is coming for Columbus, so they best get things together. All things considered, this is the right time for a wake-up call.

For bonus chuckles, here’s a photo of Kekalainen on a railing.

via AP

Personal reasons: No Ovechkin for Caps tonight

Alex Ovechkin
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Alex Ovechkin won’t play for the Washington Capitals on Tuesday because of personal reasons, the team confirmed.

He entered the building considerably later than usual, but his presence at least opened the door for the possibility of No. 8 suiting up against the San Jose Sharks.

Instead, the Capitals will face the hot-starting Sharks without Ovechkin (personal reasons) and Nicklas Backstrom (injury).

That’s a tall order, yet it’s also an opportunity for Barry Trotz to prove his system is a difference-maker … and that the Capitals have the young players to take up the mantle when the big stars are out

This is how Washington’s forward lines may look tonight:

No, the Capitals have not shared details regarding what his “personal reasons” might be, by the way.