Holtby practises after hit in eye with a high stick
Washington Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby practised fully Sunday morning, apparently no worse for wear after Columbus forward Cam Atkinson inadvertently wedged his stick through a hole in Holtby’s mask.
The accident injured Holtby’s left eye in the second period of Saturday night’s game.
The Blue Jackets won the game, 2-1 in overtime.
Holtby didn’t return to the game, and it’s unclear if he’ll start against the St. Louis Blues on Monday, the first game of a back-to-back set.
But coach Todd Reirden said the team doesn’t intend to recall another netminder, indicating Holtby is at least healthy enough to dress.
Washington could choose to start Pheonix Copley against the Blues and then have Holtby in net against the Nashville Predators on Tuesday.
“Obviously, anything with your eyes is a little scary,” Holtby said.
“It’s fortunate that it wasn’t anything too serious.
“You just move on . ... I didn’t have the sight to keep going. I just wouldn’t have been a benefit to the team. it was one of those things. Eyes heal quickly, so just 24 hours and I’ll be back to normal.”
Holtby, who has had laser eye surgery in the past, intimated his vision isn’t quite 100 per cent yet, but “it’s progressing the right way, obviously,” he said.
“Like anything, a scratch to your eye takes a bit to heal.”
Said Reirden: “It’s something you’ve got to be extremely careful with and cautious.
“He’s had some other work done on his eyes in the past, so it was a serious situation for us at the time ...
“We needed to make sure we handled (it) properly and went through all the proper steps to make sure there was no further issues ...
“We’re going to see how it is tomorrow still.
“Just with the sweat and all that, it’s going to get re-evaluated right now, so that was a step in the process.”