- Israel hits symbols of Hamas rule; scores killed
- Mississippi abortion law can’t be enforced
- Teacher who survived Sandy Hook has book deal
- Jury awards Jesse Ventura $1.8M in case vs. ‘American Sniper’ author Chris Kyle
- Government OKs Arab-owned company to operate U.S. cargo port
- Defense lawyer: McDonnell’s wife had ‘crush’ on CEO
- Chinese hackers stole ‘huge quantities’ of sensitive data on Israel’s Iron Dome
- House unveils bill to speed deportations of illegal immigrant children
- Californians protest middle school for hiring white man to teach cultural studies
- Killer’s sentencing overturned because mother couldn’t find seat in courtroom
Injured duo Ovechkin, Arnott form bond off ice
Forwards now healthy for Caps’ stretch run
Question of the Day
The teammates have developed a strong bond - mostly off the ice - since then as they’ve shared time together while recovering from injuries. Both Ovechkin and Arnott returned Tuesday night at Verizon Center in a 3-2 shootout loss to the Carolina Hurricanes, and the Caps hope they stay healthy down the stretch.
“They’re two really good hockey players, especially offensively. They’re a big threat every time they’re on the ice,” center Marcus Johansson said. “We’ve missed them when they haven’t been playing. Of course, we’re happy to get them back.”
“I got to know Ovi a lot better just hanging out with him being injured together,” Arnott said. “It was kinda nice that way, but it would’ve been nicer to play, no question.”
Barring a setback for either player, that won’t be a problem down the stretch. And while the Caps thrived without both Arnott and Ovechkin, thanks to some solid goaltending and stingy defense, perhaps the time away from the rink helped them in an intangible way.
“He’s kind of guy who has experience, who won Stanley Cup. To be around him, it’s a good time for me. He pushed me hard to do what he thinks is gonna be better for my body,” Ovechkin said. “He’s a funny guy and it’s nice to talk to him about everything - about hockey, about life, about some small stuff.”
There was a glimpse of that in early March when Nicklas Backstrom was still in the lineup, and it was a tantalizing look at how good this team could be up front.
“We had a couple games when everybody was healthy and we were good,” defenseman Karl Alzner said. “I thought every time we were on the ice, we were sending out a real tough matchup for the other team to get.”
Defensemen Mike Green and Tom Poti remain out with seemingly no immediate end in sight for their injury issues. But with Dennis Wideman doing his best Green impression and the rest of the defensive corps boasting plenty of NHL experience, the Caps have patience not to rush them back.
Those guys getting back in time for the playoffs would be somewhat of a bonus at this point. Ovechkin and Arnott were necessities, so the Caps are more than thrilled to get both back for the stretch run.
“Two great, offensive goal scorers for us,” defenseman Jeff Schultz said. “With them now as close to 100 percent as can be, it’s gonna be a big plus for us.”
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
- WHYNO: Tomas Vokoun gets unexpected Stanley Cup shot with Penguins
- Brandon Meriweather, Redskins' secondary ready for bounceback year
- Kirk Cousins embraces role as Redskins' offseason starter as RG3 rehabs from injury
- Capitals notes: Realignment won't prompt roster remake
- Despite Caps' first-round playoff exit, Adam Oates' first season as coach left a positive taste
Latest Blog Entries
- Redskins injury updates (5/23): WR Pierre Garcon, CB Josh Wilson each had labrum surgery
- Capitals 'love' Matt Hendricks, but how much?
- Wojtek Wolski signs in Russia's Kontinental Hockey League
- Tom Poti won't return to Capitals, plans to continue his NHL career
- Is Tom Wilson ready to be a regular for Capitals?
- Boehner rules out impeachment: 'Scam started by Democrats'
- Obama: 'Not a new Cold War,' but new Russia sanctions announced
- Obama thanks Muslims for 'building the very fabric of our nation'
- Federal judge grants 90-day stay in D.C. gun case
- Smugglers, rainstorm combine to poke holes in border fence
- PHILLIPS: Once-in-a-century stupidity
- Obama's brother wears Hamas scarf bearing anti-Israel slogans in photo
- HURT: Impeaching Obama is a losing strategy for the GOP
- Kerry's credibility questioned as fighting in Gaza rages
- D.C. seeks to stay judge's order allowing gun owners to carry in public
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world