The hit that injuried Green. (Photo: Jamie Sabau)

Injuries could sink the Washington Capitals. Just as they started to bounce back from the seven game losing streak, three players have been forced from the lineup.

First, Mikhail Grabovski twisted his ankle when he was hauled down in the crease. There’s no timetable for his return and he isn’t traveling with the team.

Next, Mike Green got hit up high by Boone Jenner in the second period on Thursday. Green’s head was slammed violently into the end boards. He appeared shaken and didn’t return to the game. Green missed Friday’s contest in Detroit.

Finally, Brooks Laich was shut down in the third period on Friday after his groin “was getting a little tight,” according to head coach Adam Oates. That’s bad news for Brooks, who missed almost all of last season with the injury. The forward claimed they had finally found the cause, but after missed practices and now missed game time, that’s clearly not the case.

Green’s injury is potentially the most serious, as he has a history of concussions. His continued absence would be a massive hit to the already weak Capitals defense. After Friday’s game, Oates confirmed some people’s fears: Green might have concussion.

“We’re going through the process of testing him,” Oates said. “The normal tests.”

The injury, however, may not be serious. When asked if Green would return soon, Oates responded “hopefully, but no guarantees.”

The Caps can’t afford to lose anyone else.

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  • Chris Cerullo

    Literally the last thing this team needs is injuries.

  • Rob W.

    so tired of laich and his groin

  • Brittany

    Why the hell wasn’t Oleksy called up to replace Green?

  • chilll

    I guarantee he is more disgusted with the situation than anyone else.

  • brian!

    Either because he’d have to clear waivers again, or his cap hit is too high.

  • ..

  • dylan wheatley

    uh oh the team might accidentally get better

  • Fedor

    1. He wouldn’t, re-entry waivers aren’t in the CBA anymore.
    2. It’s at league minimum.

  • Shaun Phillips

    I was wondering if the Caps were going to get hit with the injury bug this season as they’ve gotten off pretty light compared to some other teams (ex. Wings missing top two lines for several games). Not good for this team.

  • Shaun Phillips

    Cause Oates has a thing for Carrick. Not sure why as he’s gotten out-muscled and out-played most games.

  • Tom

    He should’ve had sports hernia surgery a year ago. He’d be fine now.

  • Jack Conness

    First off, I don’t wish injuries upon anyone. I’d rather have them traded, sent down, etc. BUT this Laich injury issue is only good for the team now. He is done. He has been one hell of a player in Washington for years but his groin injury has and will end his career. The season is over so I am hoping Latta can come up and get his time in the NHL that he deserves. I want to see what he can do.

    And that Mike Green injury is very scary. I have a bad feeling about this one, and his future. We will see. My fingers are crossed.

  • Brooks has been on a steady incline for the last month– I think he’s still got some in the tank. I hope he comes back soon– he might be a positive possession player in time.

  • Lawrence

    lol not with Green being out imo, but perhaps with Laich I agree.

  • bggb


  • bggb

    As Japers rink has been discussing and I agree with: Brooksie is no longer good enough to be top-6 on a team who wants to win a few playoff series.

    I forget what his contract is, but for the time being it’s too much for a guy who’s a good third liner at this point.

  • bggb

    I don’t understand why they didn’t or don’t shut him down for the season.

    Groin injuries are extremely nagging and there’s not much benefit to testing it. It’s not like the team relies on him that much these days.

  • Patrick Neimeyer

    When he gets healthy, think Brooks Laich maybe a fish for trade. Clearly not the same as last year, or the year before that or before that. My hunch is that Pauly D’s “Beat that Beat Up,” didn’t resonate proudly in the locker room after 2011 and certainly with Brooks’ taste of music.

    Angry Ovi…

  • TWSS

  • Totes. I think JP and I have long wanted Brooks to be 3C + PK guy. Possibly even 4C checking line. No expectation of offense except to earn OZFOs and then get off the ice.

  • Rob W.

    i dont doubt it, i had the same injury from lacrosse and it just never fully healed

  • Rob W.

    well played sir

  • Jack Conness

    3rd or 4th line would be fine with me but he doesn’t deserve top-six minutes anymore. I agree with you.


    You want a $4.5M dollar 4th line checking center on the team? Who do the caps get to fill out the rest of the roster? Beer League? Eh mcphee… I’ll play for half of the league minimum!!


    Brooks Laich is the perfect candidate to be a compliance buyout this summer. I hope the new general manager can do this. No other GM in the league would trade for him. It the only option left. But knowing the caps luck, the last game of the season, he will tear his groin and nothing can be done.


    Oleksy would clear waivers again if he was put on them. Highly doubt that was the issue.

  • seandlax9

    Positive possession doesn’t mean a damn thing for a team that can’t score on a consistent basis

  • Eric Schulz

    Possessing the puck prevents goals, even if we don’t score. That’s why I call our offense our defense.

  • Eric Schulz

    Young players on cheap ELCs, like Forsberg… oops. Seriously, we could’ve had $9.5 million plus in cap room next year with a lineup that looks something like:
    Kuznetsov – Backstrom – Ovechkin
    Fehr – Grabovski – Wilson
    Laich – Johansson – Forsberg
    Chimera – Beagle – Brouwer
    Alzner – Carlson
    Green – Schmidt
    Orlov – Oleksy

    plus Erskine as a healthy scratch, prospects/AHLers of note: Burakovsky, Carrick, Galiev, Stoa, Wellman, plus whatever we get for Neuvirth.
    That’s $9.5 million in space BEFORE I account for Kuznetsov, plus the likely raises for Fehr and Grabovski. However, it also doesn’t take into account the (likely) rising cap; call it roughly a wash. Also, Brouwer is NOT a 4th liner, even though he’s playing like it this year.

  • Eric Schulz

    Why would somebody trade for him?


    That line up isn’t seriously much better than the one this year. Bunch of hope placed on Kuzya who hasn’t played a game in the NHL yet, to come in and be an effective top line forward and suffer no fallback during his rookie season. Hard to believe that’s going to happen. More importantly, that defense is still horrible.

    I also don’t see where Joel Ward is in your lineup. There is no way that salary is hitting the pressbox.

  • Eric Schulz

    It’s quite a bit better… Kuznetsov should be a better fit on the top line than Johansson, Johansson’s speed and stick-handling is better utilized as center on 3rd line, the 2nd line is better with Wilson there, and the 4th line has Chimera and Brouwer, who are way overqualified to be 4th liners. I’d say the top line is 105-115% better (unless Kuznetsov is better than I expect), the 2nd line is 110% better (although we have those guys, we just don’t want to use Wilson there), the 3rd is maybe 110% better, the 4th is 135% better. Also, the big thing is, instead of less than a million in cap space, we now have almost $10 million, so we can use that to sign a top-4 defenseman in free agency (hopefully). I’d like to try Laich on defense paired with Green, honestly, as he’s played defense before, and if it worked it would justify his contract. Perhaps it would help him, asking him to simplify his game and not relying on him to produce; who knows? Either way, we’d be better and would have flexibility.


    Funny video.

    On the the main point, yes actually “possessing” the puck prevents goals. But that’s the possessing Peter is talking about. He’s talking about the “possessing” derived from calculating shots for and against. Which we all know is a highly flawed stat.

    In terms of actually possessing the puck aka holding onto it in the offensive zone, Laich is terrible.


    The biggest flaw you overlook with the team is the guy behind the bench. Who will not play players in positions best suited to maximize their strength. The roster the caps have now could be playing better than they are if people were used correctly. There is nothing to suggest from Oates that Majo will ever play center (even with Grabo and Laich injured) he is still on the wing for today’s game etc.

    $10M available? Sign Grabo and 5.5-6 of that is gone. No top 4 dman is coming to Washington to play for $3.5M a season. Laich and Green is a terrible idea. You are making some wild claims here.

    Here is the skinny on the caps getting better. Trade Laich, Brouwer and a goalie to get that top 4 dman. But before all this fire mcphee.


    There isn’t a dumb enough GM in the league who’d trade for Laich. He’s just as if not more untradable than erat.

  • His $4.5M is on the roster no matter where he plays. I’d rather he play somewhere he’d do well and not hurt the team. Seems somewhat obvious.

  • Eric Schulz

    Yeah, it’s flawed, but “highly flawed” is overstating it. And besides, if your opinion is that it doesn’t matter since we can’t score, what’s your solution? Play Ovie 60 minutes a game? Give up?

  • Eric Schulz

    I didn’t resign Joel Ward.

  • Eric Schulz

    My point was that I hate what GMGM has done; he screwed up, ROYALLY, with that Forsberg trade. I undid it so we no longer have Erat’s massive albatross. I let Ward walk… moved Erat back to Nashville. I used, put those lines together, and ended up with $9,571,413 of cap room. Again, without accounting for a raise for Grabovski, Fehr, and Kuznetsov’s contract… but also without accounting for the cap going up next year. I imagine that’s MOSTLY a wash; worse case, we should still have over $7 million in cap space. Unless there was a legit top-4 defenseman in free agency that I wanted, I may just enter the year trying Laich on defense, and utilize some youth/prospects as trade bait for that top-4 guy; Galiev, Sanford, Carrick, Bowey, whoever we draft this offseason, whatever we get in return for Neuvirth, a pick or two.
    My underlying point was that GMGM was the problem, because we had a fine team put together until his Erat trade screwed us for now and the future.

  • Eric Schulz

    And yes, let’s trade Laich. Why don’t we just move him for Dougie Hamilton of the Bruins, and trade Brouwer for Duncan Keith. I’m not trading those guys because the reason we don’t want them is the reason nobody else does. Going back in time is impossible too, of course, but at least you can imagine a scenario in which we have Forsberg and don’t have Erat’s albatross: all we have to do is imagine GMGM NOT being a moron. Okay, maybe that’s also not a feasible scenario.

  • Eric Schulz

    Oates is only in his 2nd season as a head coach, his first full season. There’s every reason to expect him to improve as a head coach.
    On the other hand, it’s nigh impossible to imagine GMGM getting better. He made a panic trade to screw over our future (and, again, it was such a bad trade because it didn’t even address the present beyond killing our cap space) when he had one of the most patient owners in the league. We need to get rid of him, obviously. I’m not thrilled with a lot of things Oates has done, but I am prepared to be patient with him.

  • Eric Schulz

    Wouldn’t it be cool to have Mathieu Perreault right now? Oh well, at least we got some lame-ass late round pick to look forward to.

  • Barrett

    He might be the perfect candidate, but I’m not sure Ted Leonsis would enjoy paying Brooks Laich roughly $9.3mil (2/3 of his salary) spread out over the next 6 years.

    Why not buyout Martin Erat? He has a NMC clause in his contract, which means the only way to move him (trades, waived or sent to minors) cannot be done without his consent. Using the buyout on Erat means paying him roughly $3.75mil over two years and erasing his $4.5mil cap hit for the 2014-15 season.