The Washington Capitals misplaced two younger intensity gamers to waivers on Monday and so they will likely face another bushy decision in an issue of weeks.
Alex Alexeyev, the Capitals’ first-round select in the 2018 NHL Draft, is in limbo because of offseason surgical operation that will stay him out at the get started of the season.
Alexeyev underwent a surgical labral restore on his left shoulder in June and his restoration time (4 to 5 months) will stay him out till past due October or November.
When Alex² returns, the Capitals will have a decision to make because of his distinctive roster situation.
Let me give an explanation for.
Currently, Alexeyev is with the Hershey Bears as he continues rehabbing his shoulder.
Via an October 2 press unlock from the Bears:
Defenseman Alexander Alexeyev has additionally been loaned to Hershey to proceed his harm rehabilitation however can’t be formally added to the roster till he’s wholesome.
PuckPedia clarified Alexeyev’s respectable classification on the crew’s roster to RMNB as of Monday, October 10.
“Since he’s on a two-way deal and was on the roster for less than 50 games last year, Alexeyev is considered season-opening injured reserve, which is pro-rated based on time on the roster,” PuckPedia defined. “He carries a $12,950 cap hit while injured. The Capitals can decide to put that as LTIR or not. Strategically it makes sense to wait and not include it today, and then add it to LTIR later this week.”
Once he’s at some degree the place he can play video games, Alexeyev may well be despatched on a conditioning stint with the Bears. Whenever Alexeyev is deemed wholesome after that, GM Brian MacLellan will have to determine what he needs to do.
As identified via the Capitals’ Mike Vogel, Alexeyev will should be returned to the Capitals’ 23-man roster or go via waivers as a result of he isn’t waivers-exempt anymore.
Alexeyev, 22, is in the ultimate 12 months of a three-year entry-level contract he signed in September 2018. The Capitals let the first two years of Alexeyev’s ELC slide ahead of he first reported to the Hershey Bears in 2020-21.
Alexeyev is now not waiver-exempt because of his past due birthday on November 15. Even although Alexeyev used to be 18 when he signed his ELC, the NHL acknowledges that 12 months as his age-19 season because of his birthday falling after September 15. Alexeyev is most effective waiver-exempt for 4 years and because that is his age-23 season, the 4 years have already handed.
The Capitals have a few choices: industry a participant to make room for Alexeyev, chance shedding Alexeyev by the use of a waiver declare, or ship another participant down (if nobody else is on injured reserve then). Potential applicants to be lower come with defenseman Matt Irwin (waivers eligible) and forwards Connor McMichael (waivers exempt), Aliaksei Protas (waivers exempt), and Joe Snively (waivers eligible).
Irwin may well be the strange guy out as he’s the crew’s 7th defenseman and at age 34 would likely no longer be claimed. But he’s additionally an established Laviolette acolyte whom the head trainer trusts, which might recommended another decision fully.
As of now, what to do with Alexeyev isn’t as simple as it’s going to appear. Alexeyev has performed just one recreation in the NHL and that used to be because of the Capitals’ harm woes closing season. The Russian rearguard is a left-handed shooter and appears to be at the similar point of construction as fellow first-rounder and lefty Lucas Johansen, who used to be amongst the crew’s ultimate cuts. Basically, at this level, Alexeyev is a tweener with upside. Would an NHL crew that doesn’t have a lot defensive intensity put a declare on him taking a look for a imaginable thieve? It’s imaginable however unclear.
What we do know is that Alexeyev’s rehab, in addition to Tom Wilson’s, will be price following as the season strikes ahead. If the Capitals don’t play their playing cards proper, they may finally end up shedding a fourth younger participant (Axel Jonsson-Fjallby, Brett Leason, and Ilya Samsonov) with out reimbursement ahead of the 12 months ends, additional diminishing the crew’s organizational intensity.
Headline photograph: Elizabeth Kong/RMNB