It seems like at the end of the night the Capitals are bruised, a little battered but hardly broken. Dennis Wideman and Mike Knuble remain out, but things at least appear good for Mike Green and Jason Arnott following Saturday’s Game 5 win over the Rangers.
Green had a very scary moment in the first period when he took a shot from New York defenseman Matt Gilroy to the face. Replays appeared to show the screws popping off Green’s helmet and he remained on the ice for about a minute before skating off and down the tunnel.
He returned to the bench in the second period but never saw the ice after the play in question. But coach Bruce Boudreau said Green was all right.
“He’s OK. We could’ve played him,” Boudreau said. “But the longer it went, we just said, ‘OK, let’s see if we can’t get by, let’s see if we can’t get by.’ If that little scrum at the end had’ve happened 14 minutes beforehand when John [Erskine] would get kicked out and another defenseman got kicked out, then we would’ve played him. We could’ve played him.
“He got a puck to the head, but he told me he was fine after the game.”
Green, who suffered a concussion Feb. 25 in a collision with Derek Stepan, missed the final 20 games of the regular season and was just starting to round into form this series. The All-Star defenseman scored the Caps’ first goal on Saturday to set the tone in the 3-1 victory, and teammates praised him for sacrificing himself on the block.
“Hats off to him for doing that,” center Jason Arnott said. “Hopefully he comes back, and he seems to be all right.”
Arnott also spent some time away from the bench and played just 12:32. The veteran missed time last month with a lower-body injury. While he didn’t say if Saturday’s issue was related, it seemed like Arnott had more than just an equipment issue keep him away.
“I’m doing all right,” he said. “I just came off for a little bit and then late in the third just figured I’d rest a little bit more and let the young guys go out there and finish them off.”
In more good news for the Caps on the injury front, Wideman was walking around Verizon Center following the win, and Knuble could be seen without any kind of brace or cast on his right hand.