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Washington Capitals defenseman John Carlson wasted no time making an impact in his return to the lineup against the Chicago Blackhawks, picking up his ninth goal of the 2022-23 season.
The goal came in the third period on the power play and was assisted by Nicklas Backstrom and Dylan Strome.
John Carlson finds twine from deep on the power play to put the Capitals up 5 at the start of the 3rd!#ALLCAPS pic.twitter.com/OFHemJ4j9P
— Hockey Daily 365 l NHL Highlights (@HockeyDaily365) March 24, 2023
Carlson suffered a serious head injury three months to the day on December 23, 2022, taking a slapshot from former teammate Brenden Dillon to the side of the head, an injury that fractured his skull and laceration of his temporal artery.
The goal was Carlson’s second point of the game, having picked up an assist on a goal by Nicklas Backstrom earlier in the contest.
John Carlson scores his ninth goal of the season on the power to extend the Capitals’ lead to 5-0. Carlson has recorded two points (1g, 1a) in his first game since Dec. 23, marking his sixth multi-point game of the season and the 140th of his career.
— CapitalsPR (@CapitalsPR) March 24, 2023
By Michael Fleetwood
A Capitals fan complains about defenseman John Carlson in December and thinks his salary could be better used elsewhere. Clarence the Angel appears to this fan and declares, “I’ll show you what the Capitals will be like without Carlson.”
So Carlson gets injured in the team’s last game before Christmas (broken skull and a severed temporal artery) and is out for a while.
The team starts losing and losing, compiling nearly the worst record in the NHL with Carlson out. Capitals are a seller at the deadline, getting rid of impending free agents in order to collect assets for the future as a retooling has begun. Attending games has become relatively depressing for fans.
Related: some stats compiled from a Japers Rink, Aberg, this morning.
Caps went 14-22 (.388 percentage) and 5-13 at home while Carlson was out.