WASHINGTON (CBSDC) — Capitals forward Brooks Laich, who’s missed 70 of 130 games over the last two seasons, entered his 2014-15 NHL campaign with the goal of playing a full 82-game schedule, but after suffering a left shoulder injury Saturday night, that will be an impossibility.
“It’s just unfortunate. I’m sick and tired of missing hockey games,” Laich told The Junkies on 106.7 The Fan Tuesday morning. “I had 82 games on my mind, playing 82 games and then all the playoff games, and it doesn’t look like I’m gonna make that goal now.”
Laich, 31, last played a full campaign in 2011-12, but left Saturday’s game against the Florida Panthers early after taking a shot to the shoulder from forward Shawn Thornton.
“I wasn’t sure [of the severity] at the time,” Laich said. “You do know that there is a difference between like a stinger — when you get a stinger, you’re like ‘Ah, it’s just gotta come back, get the feeling back’ — versus something that you’re like ‘Okay, this is different, this is a bit of an injury.’ And my left arm was just dead. I couldn’t lift it, couldn’t move it sort of thing, so I knew there was something a little more serious than a stinger.”
Capitals coach Barry Trotz announced Monday Laich would be placed on short-term Injured Reserve — requiring him to miss seven days of competitive play, or in other words, all of Washington’s three-game road trip to western Canada (Edmonton, Calgary, Vancouver) — and replaced on the roster in a corresponding move by Jay Beagle.
Of how the injury occurred specifically, Laich said, “This happened with three minutes left in the game against Florida. It was just a really innocent check. It was just a check that you take, honestly guys, every single shift. And for some reason I was just caught out of position a little bit, with my arm extended, and just banged up my shoulder a little bit. But nothing too serious.”
Laich says he will still participate in practice Tuesday.
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