Tag: long-term injured reserve

Florida Panthers v Washington Capitals

Mike Green will be sidelined until at least February


The Washington Capitals better not have been holding out until Mike Green could make a full return, because it looks like that day won’t come anytime soon.

CSNWashington.com’s Chuck Gormley reports that the team placed him on the long-term injured reserve on Thursday. For that reason, Green won’t be eligible to return until Feb. 1 – at the earliest – meaning he’ll miss a minimum of eight more games.

Green was only in the middle of his second game back from a groin injury on Saturday when he re-injured that nagging ailment. The problem is so serious that the Capitals said he might not be the same for a “long time.”

This is devastating news for Green, but the bottom line is that the Caps are likely used to him being out of the lineup this season. From the looks of things, Washington might need Dennis Wideman to continue playing All-Star-caliber hockey because he could be their top offensive defenseman for quite some time.

Sidney Crosby starts season on injured reserve, but there’s hope

Sidney Crosby
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We all know how Sidney Crosby is doing well during training camp in pushing himself to be ready to play at some point this season. He’s been practicing with the team, albeit without contact, and he’s going through all the drills and exercises any player would do in camp.

With the season starting this week and the team heading to Vancouver to kick off the season, the Penguins put Crosby on injured reserve to start the season. By being on IR that normally means Crosby won’t be able to play for at least a week. That’s not the case here as Crosby is being carried over on IR from the previous season, he can come off at any point. The key thing here is that Crosby isn’t starting the season on long-term injured reserve. LTIR means a player has to be out for 24 days and up to ten games.

We know Crosby is traveling with the Penguins to Vancouver, but his progress is improving so much that the lack of LTIR designation hints that Crosby could be ready to go within a month. As we’ve seen all throughout Crosby’s progress in coming back from his concussion, the Penguins have treated him very carefully in making sure he’s 100% clear of symptoms before getting back to full-contact action in practice and for games.

We’re not coming right out and saying that Crosby is going to be playing games within a month for Pittsburgh, anything can happen in the meantime, but Crosby’s progress is far enough along that the Penguins don’t feel the need to put him on LTIR to start the year. Whenever Crosby is ready to go, we’ll all be sure to hear about it shouted from the confluence of the three rivers in Pittsburgh, but if you’re a Penguins fan or just a Crosby fan, this is just a sliver of promise that perhaps Sid the Kid’s return might not be as far away as you’d think.

Reports: Capitals D Tom Poti fails physical, will likely be placed on long-term injured reserve

Tom Poti
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As many probably expected, it appears that Washington Capitals defenseman Tom Poti’s health status remains an issue. Various sources report that Capitals GM George McPhee revealed that Poti failed a physical today, which means the team is likely to place him on the long-term injured reserve as he tries to fight back through injuries stemming from the 2010-11 season. Poti didn’t appear on the ice during training camp today.

It’s sad to look on the bright side of a troubling injury situation, but the Capitals should get some salary cap relief from Poti going on the LTIR. CapGeek lists them as a bit more than $890K above the salary cap ceiling at this moment, but with Poti’s $2.875 million cap hit (temporarily?) off the books, the team should have wiggle room for injury and prospect-related roster moves. Poti will continue to try to work his way through his injury issues.

Poti played parts of the last four seasons with the Capitals, although he missed a significant amount of games. He missed 114 games during that span, with the 2010-11 season being the most troubled yet. Poti played in just 21 games last season, scoring two goals and five assists for seven points and a -4 rating.

When healthy, Poti can be an effective (if occasionally error prone) offensive defenseman. He logged at least 21 minutes per game for Washington in the three seasons before 10-11. Poti’s contract expires after the 2012-13 season, so the Capitals must continue to watch his progress.

A healthy return might cause some questions for the Caps’ brass – much like Sami Salo’s situation did for a while with the Vancouver Canucks last season – but here’s hoping that Poti can get his career back together soon.

Capitals’ cap dilemma: Tom Poti working to return for training camp?

Washington Capitals v Atlanta Thrashers

It’s been known for some time that Tom Poti’s groin has been hanging on by a thin thread. He only played 21 games last season and with two goals and seven points, it wasn’t like he was setting the league on fire. With serious concerns about his health going forward, Capitals GM George McPhee went ahead this offseason on the assumption that Poti would not be available for service next season. More importantly, he went ahead with the assumption that his (approx.) $2.9 million cap hit wouldn’t be a problem next season. McPhee went out and acquired free agent Roman Hamrlik on July 1 to join the likes of Mike Green, Dennis Wideman, John Erskine, Karl Alzner, and John Carlson on the back-end. Add Jeff Schultz into the mix and Washington already has seven serviceable NHL defenseman on the roster next season without Poti’s services.

For all intents and purposes, the Tom Poti era was over in Washington. But then—the 34-year-old defenseman threw a wrench into the Caps’ plans. Poti’s agent Paul Krepelka told Katie Carrera of the Washington Post that the blueliner expects to be ready for action in September:

“He is working with his trainers throughout the summer with the intention that he will be ready to fully participate once training camp begins”

Well, you know what they say about the best laid plans of mice and men…

It’s great to hear that Poti is working hard in the offseason to recover from his career threatening injury. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like the Capitals want him back—nor do they have room for the former 3rd round pick. The cold, hard reality is that their offseason moves declare that the organization has moved on.

Now, both the player and the team are left in a awkward situation. It’s doubtful Poti will make the club’s roster whether he’s healthy enough to start the season or not. The Capitals are in a position where they have to do something with the defenseman (and his contract) or they’ll be over the salary cap next season. Neither situation is ideal: long-term injured reserve or possibly waived and sent to the minors.

If he continues to rehab but finds that he’s unable to perform in training camp, the Capitals will put Poti on long-term injured reserve. From all accounts, this has been the plan for months—the player still gets paid, but the team gets salary cap relief to replace his role on the team. Of course, LTIR only works if the player is actually injured.

The other alternative for the Capitals would be to waive a fully-recovered Tom Poti and bury his contract in the AHL. Even if he’s healthy enough to play, Washington still has a blueline that is stacked and simply has no room for Poti. McPhee could waive the former Boston University defenseman and (assuming nobody claims him off of waivers) have him play in Hershey for the entire season. Since Poti is on a one-way deal, he’ll still get paid his $3 million this season ($3 million this season, $2.75 next season) but he won’t play in the NHL. There’s nothing stopping Washington from moving him to Hershey since he doesn’t have a no-movement clause in his contract. Having Poti around as an 8th defenseman would be nice, but getting the team under the salary cap is a little more important.

Washington will have to wait to see how the situation plays out over the course of the offseason. It’s doubtful that Poti will see time with the Caps next season whether he can get himself into shape or is unable to recover. The only question left is the method the team will use to hide his contract from the salary cap.

It’s official: Marc Savard is done for the season and playoffs with concussion

Marc Savard

Bruins fans’ worst fears were confirmed today when GM Peter Chiarelli and team physician Dr. Peter Asnis announced today that star center Marc Savard would miss the remainder of the regular season as well as the playoffs thanks to the concussion he suffered two weeks ago against Colorado.

A sad and scared-looking Savard spoke with reporters today at a press conference in Boston to discuss his latest situation and it’s eerily similar to what he dealt with last March after his concussion against the Penguins thanks to Matt Cooke’s disgusting blow to the head.

“Still some headaches off and on,” said Savard, who appeared pale, tired, and withdrawn during a 23-minute press conference at TD Garden. “I think the thing that scares me the most are little memory things, where I forget that I’ve asked someone a question, or little things like that that scare me. The odd dizzy stuff, so that’s also something that worries me.”

Savard went on to say that he blacked out briefly after the hit he took from Matt Hunwick that put him on the shelf for the year but he doesn’t hold anything against Hunwick for the hit. Savard says he’s heard from Hunwick a couple of times since the hit and he’s apologized for what happened. As for what Savard will do now, he says he’ll spend more time with his family at home now and travel from there to Boston to keep up with the team and get treatment. For now, rest and no stress is what Savard will be doing to try and alleviate his concussion symptoms.

The Bruins are placing Savard on long-term injured reserve which gives the B’s salary cap relief for the amount of Savard’s contract meaning they can add just over $4 million more in salary to get someone to fill out their ranks. Whether or not the Bruins will make adding another forward a priority over addressing their defensive woes remains to be seen, but Chiarelli knows that finding someone of Savard’s capability will be nearly impossible to do.

For now, youngster Zach Hamill will get a chance to play some with the Bruins and try to keep things going positively with the big club. He’s got big shoes to try and fill and if things don’t go well there, the pressure will be amped up on Chiarelli to make a move to help the Bruins down the stretch.