- Obama downplays IRS scandal, blames Obamacare rollout on ‘outdated’ agencies
- Pregnancies decline overall, up among older women
- Pentagon plans to destroy Syrian chemical arms on ship at sea
- Paris Metro issues ‘politeness manual’ to improve passengers’ behavior
- Justin Bieber, crew detained at Australian airport in drug search
- Lee Rigby trial: Muslim who machete-hacked soldier calls it ‘humane’ kill
- GM ending Chevy sales in Europe to focus on Opel and Vauxhall
- Putin’s diplomats to U.S. busted for living high life off $1.5M bilked from Medicaid
- Happy Meal: Couple goes to McDonald’s, leaves with bag packed with cash
- Boehner: It took me 3 to 4 hours to sign up for Obamacare
Capitals notes: Brooks Laich could return to practice soon
“You know what? He said he felt a lot better. He looks a lot better,” Oates said. “It’s one of those situations where I got to trust the trainers and doctors in terms of evaluation, how soon. I don’t know. Sometimes it might linger, sometimes it might just go to that next level and feel great.”
The next step for the 29-year-old forward, who declined to talk to reporters Tuesday about his injury, is to be able to absorb contact in a practice setting.
“I think he’s really close to contact,” Oates said. “I can only speak from experience where I had a couple groin injuries and you feel like it’s lingering and all of a sudden one day you feel like, ‘Wow, it’s that much better that I can take contact.’ Then once you get over that hurdle, you’re fine.”
It’s uncertain when Laich will get over that hurdle. There is no timeframe for him to make his season debut.
“I would hope every guy wants to play, but, yeah, he’s dying,” Oates said. “Nobody wants to miss time at the start of the year, and he’s a big part of our team. We miss him.”
Toronto Maple Leafs forward Phil Kessel went into Tuesday night’s game at the Caps without a goal in his first nine games. The longest goal-scoring drought of his career was 14 games in 2011.
Oates said the key was getting chances, and Kessel was doing that with a league-best 40 shots through Monday. As a fellow star who has gone through struggles, captain Alex Ovechkin offered his own advice to Kessel.
“I think after a couple games, you think like, ‘OK, I’m gonna have a chance and I’m gonna score,’” Ovechkin said. “After nine games you feel like big pressure on your shoulder, especially in Toronto. The fans, the media all over him I think. I just wanna give him advice like, ‘Don’t listen nobody. Just play your game.’
“Everybody knows he can score; he’s a top player out there. Lots of players play against him very carefully and give him more pressure. He just have to handle it.”
Backstrom gnome night
Each fan attending Tuesday night’s game at Verizon Center received a Nicklas Backstrom garden gnome, easily the most entertaining Caps giveaway in recent history. The center has had bobblehead likenesses of himself, but the gnome was a first.
© Copyright 2013 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?
- 'Hunger Games' delivers Obama's message on income inequality: liberal group
- NAPOLITANO: Pope Francis should be saving souls, not pocketbooks
- Obama returns to class warfare as poll numbers plunge
- Inside China: Nuclear submarines capable of widespread attack on U.S.
- CARSON: Getting to the top by starting at the bottom
- U.S. drops 2,000 mice on Guam by parachute to kill snakes
- Russian diplomats busted bilking $1.5 million from Medicaid
- CURL: 'Mission Accomplished' for Obamacare
- U.S. pilot scares off Iranians with 'Top Gun'-worthy stunt: 'You really ought to go home'
- U.S. debt jumps a record $328 billion tops $17 trillion for first time
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
John Wood illustrates a new American politics, and the path to get there.
All of the world’s problems, solved on your back porch
White House pets gone wild!