Brooks Laich will miss the start of the Washington Capitals’ season, according to a report from the reputable Bob McKenzie of TSN.
McKenzie reported early Sunday morning that Laich would miss the first one to two weeks of the regular season. The 29-year-old is believed to be dealing with a groin injury he suffered while playing in Switzerland during the NHL lockout.
“Who said that? Has Bob McKenzie spoken to me? Ask Bob that question,” Laich said.
Laich was not on the ice for the start of training camp Sunday morning. Neither Laich nor general manager George McPhee would say directly that he failed his physical.
McPhee only said: “He’s not quite ready to go.”
As for the timeframe, Laich said there’s a “roadmap” he’s following.
“I’m waking up each day very hopeful. I can’t expand any on that. It’s disappointing not to be out there,” Laich said. “Obviously, there’s a lot of excitement here today. It’s disappointing not to be on the ice today, but I wake up each morning hopeful and take it from there.”
Laich skated by himself for a couple of days this past week before teammates got on the ice for informal workouts. He claimed he was healthy, even though he looked to be testing out an injury.
Laich also said he skated earlier Sunday morning.
Asked if he got hurt while playing in Switzerland’s National League A, Laich said: “I don’t want to get into that.” McPhee dodged a question about whether the Caps have to pay Laich, saying the team still had to get through pages of information from the league.
NHL deputy comissioner Bill Daly said the agreement with the NHLPA was to treat injuries suffered during the lockout as non-hockey related.
“The Clubs are entitled to suspend without pay for the duration of the suspension,” Daly wrote in an email.