Report: Grabovski unable to rejoin Capitals

Friday, 09.13.2013 / 6:21 PM | Staff

Washington Capitals center Mikhail Grabovski remains unable to practice with the team due to visa issues that have delayed his arrival to training camp, the Washington Post reported Friday.

The newspaper earlier said Grabovski would be able to practice Sunday, but now reports he will meet with the team in Belleville, Ontario, on Saturday, when the Capitals play the Winnipeg Jets in the 2013 Kraft Hockeyville game.

Grabovski will remain in Toronto, and Monday has a meeting at the United States consulate.

Washington signed Grabovski to a one-year, $3 million contract last month and has him pegged as Mike Ribeiro's replacement as the center on the second line. The Toronto Maple Leafs bought out the final four years of Grabovski's contract in early July, making him an unrestricted free agent.

Grabovski had 16 points in 48 games for the Maple Leafs last season, but he was put into a checking role and clashed with coach Randy Carlyle. He had career highs in goals (29), assists (29) and points (58) with the Maple Leafs in 2010-11.

"I feel for him because obviously he wants to be here, he doesn’t want to get off on the wrong foot, get some reps and see the guys," Oates told the Post. "A lot of people don’t understand walking into a locker room is a tough thing, going to a new team is not an easy thing. You want to settle in and have as much time to do that as possible."

Forward Brooks Laich (left hip flexor) did not skate Friday and will not play against the Jets, the newspaper said.

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