Going into Washington’s game against the San Jose Sharks on Saturday night, the Capitals were 9-0 with defenseman Mike Green in the lineup. After the 5-2 defeat in northern California, the team fell to 9-1 and it may be a while before we get to add to those totals. He only played three shifts and missed the last 10 minutes of the second period—and never appeared in the final frame. For those keeping track at home, the comeback attempt lasted all of 26 shifts in a game and a half.
After the game, Caps head coach Dale Hunter said that Green was removed from the game because he felt tightness in his injured groin. Like teammate Nicklas Backstrom before the game, Green was taken out of the game as a precautionary measure. He’s already missed 29 games with a sprained ankle and his injured groin, so the last thing the Caps want to do is take any extra risks with a player that has already struggled with injuries this year.
There was worry that Green left the game due to an injury he may have sustained when he was drilled with a tough check from Andrew Desjardins in the second, but Hunter explained that Green’s absence in the third period was unrelated to the body check. The good news is that it could just be his previous injury flaring up a little bit.
Of course, the bad news is that his previous injury may be flaring up.
File this under the “adding insult to injury” file: the Edmonton Oilers saw Jordan Eberle hobble to the dressing room in the first period of their 4-1 loss to the Dallas Stars. Here’s was the official word from the Oilers: “Jordan Eberle will not return to today’s game with a right knee injury.” The play that cost Eberle the rest of the game didn’t look like anything serious, but he ended up leaving the game after only taking a handful of shifts in the first period.
As if things couldn’t get any worse for the struggling, wounded Oilers these days. The emerging star was unable to return to the ice and thus far, the Oilers aren’t offering any details about the severity of the injury. Eberle will probably be examined on Monday and didn’t talk to the media after the game, but he was able to leave the arena under his own power without the aid of crutches. For Edmonton fans looking for any positive signs, that’s about all we have for you.
In addition to Eberle, the Oilers have lost Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Tom Gilbert, and Ryan Whitney on their brutal seven game road trip. You know it’s bad when a team goes 1-6-0 on the road and the record wasn’t the worst part of the trip.
Here’s the video of Eberle getting his skates tied up with Dallas forward Jamie Benn that most likely caused the injury.
News out of South Beach is that Florida Panthers starting goaltender is out for two weeks with a knee injury he suffered on New Year’s Eve against the Montreal Canadiens. Renaud Lavoie from RDS broke the news and added the disclaimer: “could be longer.” We’ll just let the “could be longer” part settle in for the Panthers fans out there.
Theodore has been a solid No. 1 netminder for the surprising Panthers this season. He’s given his new team a chance to win just about every start; it’s all Dale Tallon and Co. could have hoped for when they watched Tomas Vokoun walk away and signed Theodore on July 1. Don’t look now, but Theodore as a better goals against average and save percentage through the first three months of the season.
Head coach Kevin Dineen has already announced that Jacob Markstrom will get the start in Florida’s next game against the Islanders. The team plays back-to-back games against the Islanders and Devils, so they will probably need both the rookie Markstrom and inconsistent back-up Scott Clemmensen to step up their games as the Panthers continue to fight for the Southeast Division lead.
The Panthers doctors and coaches are remaining optimistic that Theodore’s injury won’t turn into a long-term problem. “We got our fingers crossed it’s nothing too serious,’’ head coach Kevin Dineen told the Sun-Sentinel. “Our doctors feel good that he’ll be back in the swing of things fairly soon.’’
Until then, hotshot prospect Markstrom will get another opportunity to impress at the NHL level.