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Semyon Varlamov: 'My knee is injured'

(Jonathan Newton/The Washington Post)

That "lower-body injury" Semyon Varlamov suffered late in Sunday's rehab start in Hershey was not related to the groin muscle he strained on Dec. 7, after all, he told me this morning.

The injury he suffered with the Bears, the oft-injured goalie said, was a "minor" sprain of his right knee (MCL) while kicking out his pad to make a save. Last year, the 21-year-old missed time with a sprained left knee.

"Bad luck," Varlamov said, showing off his rapidly improving English. "In the three last minutes, my knee is hurt. The groin is good. It was feeling good in the game. But my knee is injured."

He returned to Washington this week to work out with strength and conditioning coach Mark Nemish. The goalie hopes to be back on the ice on Monday.

"I have to play," he said, shaking his head. "It's been a month. Everybody tells me be positive."

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  January 7, 2010; 11:50 AM ET
 | Tags: Semyon Varlamov  
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Sounds like a pretty mild sprain. Hopefully his recoery will be quick and he can rejoin the team sooner rather than later.

Posted by: DBnMD | January 7, 2010 11:54 AM | Report abuse

We MISS you Varly!!!!!!!!!! PLEASE get better!!!!!!!

Posted by: capscoach | January 7, 2010 11:56 AM | Report abuse

Good news: Groin is on the mend

Bad news: Damn that MCL haha. Oh well. Heal up Varly but don't rush it. Look forward to seeing him back between the pipes soon.

Posted by: Jonathan6 | January 7, 2010 12:00 PM | Report abuse

Is the team confirming his statement?

Posted by: LouLewis | January 7, 2010 12:02 PM | Report abuse

How's Holtby playing in Hershey?

Posted by: C-way | January 7, 2010 12:02 PM | Report abuse

probably better than Theo :) lol...jk. I actually hope Theo has a good game tonight and gains back some confidence.

Posted by: capscoach | January 7, 2010 12:04 PM | Report abuse

C-way: Um, 9-1-1 with a 1.45 GAA and .949 SV%. One shutout. I'd say he's been reasonably decent.

Seriously - Holtby's a stud. I'm not pressed about Varly getting back immediately - Theodore needs to start pulling his weight again and Neuvirth's been solid enough to hold the fort. As much as the idea of Theodore between the pipes makes me cringe right now, they're going to have to do it sooner or later, and for confidence reasons sooner is better than later.

Posted by: kittypawz | January 7, 2010 12:16 PM | Report abuse


why does the team need to confirm a statement from Varlamov about the nature about Varlamov's injury? Do you think Varly doesn't know how he is hurt?

Posted by: ralph4100 | January 7, 2010 12:21 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for the intel! I'd love to see Holtby get some starts for the Caps while Varly is out. I'm pretty sure we know what Neuvy and Theo can do.

Posted by: C-way | January 7, 2010 12:27 PM | Report abuse

Having played with an MCL strain before, I can tell you that it's no picnic for a skater. In fact, it was over a year ago and it's still tender sometimes.

I can't imagine what that injury must be like for goaltenders, who (by virtue of the dynamics of the position) must place a far heavier load on that ligament than anyone else on the ice does.

Get well soon, Varly. We will be needing you.

Posted by: Rhino40 | January 7, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse

Did Varly just break one of the club's rules?

"Thou shalt answer 'no comment' to all media questions pertaining to the specific nature of any real or imagined injury."

I'll bet new team captain Ovi will soon be having a talk with young Varly.

Posted by: tominfl1 | January 7, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse


I was just noting the team's strategic vagueness of the "lower body" injury tag against his specifics that it is an MCL issue. Sometimes teams like to not be that specific, or at least that's what I thought.

Posted by: LouLewis | January 7, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse

Hey...lower body injury is a lot more specific than BB's it's a body injury comment a few weeks ago :)

Posted by: capscoach | January 7, 2010 12:42 PM | Report abuse

It now seems pretty clear that the Caps need Varlamov to be back as the #1 with Neuvirth as an insurance policy going forward.

Jose Theodore, 33, has had more than a year to show the Caps that he is capable of regaining consistent form and has failed to do so.

His contract means he will continue to be on the roster this season but the team can't have confidence right now that he can get the job done for the playoffs unless he shows a different form in the second half.

Posted by: leopard09 | January 7, 2010 12:47 PM | Report abuse


I see. I'd imagine the caps PR people are miffed at Varly. They may have given him approval but since they just defended their no disclosure policy, I doubt it...

Posted by: ralph4100 | January 7, 2010 12:48 PM | Report abuse

This is likely Theo's last chance to gain back the confidence of the coaches, team, and fans...and 1 good or even great game will not be enough. He needs to have a few good games in a row now. Show us he can be a little consistent. I think he might be able to pull it together...he needs to take that frustration and channel it into some healthy competition.

Posted by: capscoach | January 7, 2010 1:03 PM | Report abuse

hope 2 c u soon Varly, make sure 2 take ur time 2 get 2 100%. the boys r gonna need u come play-off time! as for 2nite, hope Theo has a stellar performance, i know he can and no better time than the now!!!! LETS GO CAPS!!!! eta @ VZ 5:40 and for all who go early for food, try Ping Pong Dim Sum just up from Fado's and RFD same side. great food and drinks....

Posted by: TracyMD1 | January 7, 2010 2:04 PM | Report abuse

god dammit.

well, it's not like varly would have the same concerns about injury disclosure that players might have. you don't check goalies.

Posted by: j762 | January 7, 2010 3:12 PM | Report abuse

It is not the team's disclosure policy, it is the NHL's policy. The NFL, NBA and MLB have far more stringent injury reporting procedures than does the NHL. Teams can get away with "lower body injury"... if players choose to disclose more, so be it.

Posted by: CapsFan103 | January 7, 2010 3:56 PM | Report abuse

Good game to get Theo back in. Coming off a nice win against a team without its two best scorers. Good game to rest Laing in also. BB said "the way he plays" and that is why he needs a night off now and then even if he is ready and willing to play.

Posted by: ds_kelly | January 7, 2010 4:23 PM | Report abuse

No point in rushing Varly back and it only sounds like this delays things for a couple of weeks during which we have a number of home games. This gives BB more time to evaluate who should be our No. 2 goalie going into the homstretch. I don't think we've seen the last of Theo and this homestand may be his chance to show some consistency and gain the confidence of BB.

Either way, most teams go with only one goalie in the playoffs which means it's likely going to be Varly. No reason to expect that he won't regain his form once he returns. I'm still very optimistic about our holding or improving our place in the Eastern standards this month given the number of home games and the relatively good health of the rest of the team.

Posted by: wizfan89 | January 7, 2010 5:13 PM | Report abuse

Did Varly just break one of the club's rules?

"Thou shalt answer 'no comment' to all media questions pertaining to the specific nature of any real or imagined injury."

I'll bet new team captain Ovi will soon be having a talk with young Varly.
Posted by: tominfl1 | January 7, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse

That comment made me realize just why Ovechkin was such an easy choice for captain. I mean personally, along with a lot of other people on the blog, thought Brooks Laich was probably the best choice to be captain but now that I think about Ovechkin can speak with virtually everyone on the team, especially Semin and Varly who seem to be coming along slowly with their english. I mean maybe Neuvy would have been the only one he couldn't speak to, but it seems like Neuvy is now fluent in english. And it's possible that Neuvy is already fluent in Russian, though don't hold me to that.

Posted by: CapsXXVI | January 7, 2010 6:08 PM | Report abuse

【 live score】 and 【odds advise 】

Posted by: bgfgf402 | January 10, 2010 10:09 PM | Report abuse

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