Alex Ovechkin is back and on the ice right now. He is skating with Nicklas Backstrom and Viktor Kozlov on the top line. Shaone Morrisonn is on the ice, but Sergei Fedorov is still on defense in part because John Erskine is missing. Here is what everything looks like:
UPDATE: Ovechkin was very upbeat during his interview with the media. He was very happy he had a chance to spend some time with his grandfather, who has not passed away — contrary to a report from a Russian website.
Ovechkin said he skated a couple of times with some young kids from the Dynamo system and met with his personal coach, so he isn’t worried about his conditioning. He also said he tried to keep his sleeping pattern as if he was still in the Eastern time zone. Boudreau was also pretty emphatic about having no concerns about No. 8.
The dressing room had a decidedly different vibe today — part of it was having Ovechkin back and injecting some playful energy, but it was also probably because today’s workout was significantly easier than yesterday’s.
The subject of his buddy Alexander Semin’s comments while he was away also came up. Ovechkin laughed and said that maybe the translation was bad.
In other news, Boudreau said John Erskine was excused from practice and could still play tomorrow. Shaone Morrisonn said he is good to go and ready to play. He said he coughed up some blood after taking a shot in the side late in the first period, but the CT scan was negative and there was no serious problems.
Boudreau said he has “no idea” what the lines and d-pairings will look like tomorrow morning. Brent Johnson did say that he is starting against the Senators.
Finally, Chris Clark was diplomatic about being dropped to the fourth line. Boudreau said he is not trying to send a message to his captain. He said the “will and the want” has not been a problem for Clark, but the results have not been there.