RALEIGH, N.C. | There were concerns that Michal Neuvirth had a concussion, and the Washington Capitals went through the necessary protocol. He sat out Sunday’s game but was back on the ice for Tuesday’s morning skate and reported feeling better.
“Just had a little headache, we wanted to make sure that everything’s good,” Neuvirth said after practicing at PNC Arena. “Wanted to be careful, and I’m feeling good now.”
Neuvirth took a shot to the mask during Saturday’s morning skate in Buffalo, and coach Adam Oates said the 25-year-old goaltender wasn’t feeling great the next day. The team called up Philipp Grubauer to serve as Braden Holtby’s backup against the Flyers.
What made the headache go away?
“I took a long nap Sunday afternoon, and when I woke up I felt good,” Neuvirth said.
Oates and the Caps were obviously concerned, given the frequency of concussions in hockey.
“He had to go through the tests,” Oates said. “It is the injury of sports right now. Obviously you see it in football, but for us the contact games, nobody has the magic answer on concussions.”
Concussion symptoms can appear several days after an incident. Center Nicklas Backstrom skated two days after taking an elbow to the head from Rene Bourque on Jan. 3, 2012 but then missed 40 games.
Neuvirth is set to back-up Holtby on Tuesday night at the Carolina Hurricanes.
Neuvirth had a shot from Alex Ovechkin knock his mask off Saturday in Buffalo. He said he might have to be more “careful” next time.
“I think when you get hit in the chin it’s the worst,” Neuvirth said. “When you get hit on the forehead it’s not that bad, he hit it right in the chin. That’s worst.”