Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin will miss Friday's road game against the Philadelphia Flyers, his first missed game via injury since February of last year.
According to a tweet Thursday morning from NBC Washington reporter Adam Vingan, Ovechkin will miss the game because of an upper body injury suffered in the first period of the team's 3-2 loss to the Vancouver Canucks this past Monday.
The 28-year-old sat out Wednesday's practice so the scratch from Friday's game, although a rarity for Ovechkin, shouldn't come as much of a surprise. Head coach Adam Oates would not disclose the actual injury but did confirm it's not a concussion.
Caps defenseman Mike Green had told Chuck Gormley of CSN Washington.com after it was reported that Ovechkin would miss practice that he thinks he is fine and just needs some rest:
"He's obviously our key contributor and he's got a hot stick right now, so somebody else will have to step up and fill his spot. I don't know where's he's at. I think he's OK. I think this is more of a rest for him. We'll see."
Ovechkin leads the team with 15 points, and his 10 goals is second in the league. The Caps are currently 5-7 and fifth in the Metropolitan Division heading into Friday's game vs. the Flyers. Ovechkin will be re-evaluated for Washington's home game on Saturday vs. the Florida Panthers.