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Semyon Varlamov on 'nagging injury that won't heal'

Here's another update from Sport-Express reporter Slava Malamud, who spoke with Caps goalie Semyon Varlamov after last night's game:


It's quite unusual to see Semyon Varlamov downcast. Normally, he is one of the most affable people in the room. But getting two injuries in a row that knock one out of the game for more than a month and put Olympic dreams in danger will depress even the most cheerful. Varlamov started skating last week but has since stopped doing so, fueling rumors of a setback and possibly a reaggravation of his latest injury, a sprained right knee.

"I will not skate for another two or three days and then we will see," Varlamov said. "I skated two days ago and the pain returned in the same place."

Was it when you were trying to make saves or when just skating?

"No, just skating. I skated for four days before the pain returned. It is the same thing [that was injured], nothing new. So, there won't be any skating for me Wednesday or Thursday."

Are you planning to start skating Friday?

"I want to make sure first that the knee is completely healed. I don't want to feel anything there. Then I will start practicing in earnest."

Beginning from the time you start skating, how long will it take to be game-ready?

"About four days to a week."

This means you don't have too much wiggle room before the Olympics start.

"Yes, it does. The Russian coaches have called me [Monday]. I also got a call from [legendary Soviet goaltender and head of the Russian hockey federation Vladislav] Tretiak. The Russian team doctor called too. They all told me not to rush things, that there is still a little bit of time, that it's better to be patient than to go out too soon and get injured again, maybe with additional complications."

Are you beginning to get worried that you might miss the Games?

"Of course, it's an unpleasant feeling. But I am trying to think more about my return and the club's business... But of course I am holding the Olympics in the back of my mind. It's getting closer every day."

You sound quite frustrated.

"Of course I am. I haven't played [in the NHL] for more than a month. How is this possible for a 21-year-old to get a nagging injury that won't heal? It's not the time in my career when I am supposed to get injury-prone."

So then... You will be back before the end of the season, won't you?

"Yeah, that's a good one. Let's all be optimistic, right?"

By Lindsay Applebaum  |  January 20, 2010; 10:05 AM ET
 | Tags: Semyon Varlamov  
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Comments

Poor Varly. Get well soon.

Posted by: UnleashTheCaps | January 20, 2010 10:34 AM | Report abuse

I'm not sure how I feel about Varly going to the Olympics. Clearly we don't want him to get more hurt. But, let's be realistic: he's highly unlikely to even suit up, let alone play, given the talent the Russians have ahead of him. So, maybe going and being with a team and being on the ice for practice will help him be more ready then if he just sat around KCI with the other non-olympians.

Posted by: oldtimehockey | January 20, 2010 10:42 AM | Report abuse

If it takes until after the Olympics for him to come back, so be it. If surgery would correct the problem for good, but mean he's out for the rest of the year, do it.

Posted by: jsnyd1 | January 20, 2010 10:44 AM | Report abuse

Man, poor Varly. Oh well at least it's happening now and not during the playoffs. He'll be ready by then. In the meantime as long as Jose Two-Or-Less continues to show up we'll be fine.

Posted by: CapsXXVI | January 20, 2010 11:16 AM | Report abuse

I wonder if Varly's gymnastic style has destroyed his knees since this is the second year in a row that he has had knee problems. Maybe he'll learn to control his play so as to limit those highlight saves that rip his legs apart. He is a great goalie, so this is not a critique so much as a hope. I want to see this kid with the Caps for years, not months.

Posted by: JIMALLCAPS1 | January 20, 2010 11:43 AM | Report abuse

With Boudreau's aggressive style and the soft spots on defense the Caps have to have Varlamov in net for the postseason to have a chance for a run to the Cup.

If Varlamov pushes himself for the Olympics and re-injures himself badly, he can jeopardize the entire season in Washington.

It's tough not to play for your country but he is just 21 and can be a starting goalie on the Russian team during the next Olympics at age 25.

He should be just entering his prime then.

Posted by: leopard09 | January 20, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

In the meantime as long as Jose Two-Or-Less continues to show up we'll be fine.

Posted by: CapsXXVI | January 20, 2010 11:16 AM

------------------

This made me giggle.

Posted by: Raber | January 20, 2010 2:05 PM | Report abuse

Got to see Tretiak when he was the Blackhawks part-time goalie coach when Norfolk was affiliated (AHL) with the 'Hawks...interesting gentleman. He was around the team the same time "Miracle on Ice" came out in the movies. Varly needs to listen to the man.

Posted by: norfolkoms | January 20, 2010 3:27 PM | Report abuse

1 regulation loss ever for this kid. I hope he recovers well.

Posted by: Mike4169 | January 20, 2010 4:13 PM | Report abuse

It's tough not to play for your country but he is just 21 and can be a starting goalie on the Russian team during the next Olympics at age 25.

He should be just entering his prime then.
-----

Not only that, but the next Olympics will be in his home country.

Posted by: GrimReefa | January 20, 2010 5:06 PM | Report abuse

I wonder if as he learns to play better positionally, he will stop getting injured so much...Those spectacular saves are probably hard on his body!

Posted by: capscoach | January 20, 2010 5:48 PM | Report abuse

I hope Varly gets well soon and stays that way. I also hope he can help team Russia and the Washington Caps acheive their goals.

Posted by: BetterOffWithFedorov | January 21, 2010 7:49 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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