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First Round

Svechnikov doubtful for Hurricanes in Game 6 against Capitals

Forward practiced in non-contact jersey, has missed past two games with concussion

by Kurt Dusterberg / NHL.com Correspondent

RALEIGH, N.C. -- Andrei Svechnikov is doubtful to play for the Carolina Hurricanes against the Washington Capitals in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference First Round at PNC Arena on Monday (7 p.m. ET; NBCSN, SN, TVAS, FS-CR, NBCSWA).

The 19-year-old rookie forward has missed two games with a concussion sustained in a fight with Capitals forward Alex Ovechkin in the first period of Game 3 on Monday.

Svechnikov practiced Sunday wearing a non-contact jersey, his second straight day on the ice with his teammates. He took part in the morning skate Saturday, also with a non-contact jersey, then went through a conditioning skate; He has yet to participate in a full-contact practice.

 

[RELATED: Complete Capitals vs. Hurricanes series coverage]

 

"We'll see tomorrow," Svechnikov said about Game 6. "It depends how I feel tomorrow. It feels good. My head hurts a little, but it's all right."

Hurricanes coach Rod Brind'Amour was less optimistic about Svechnikov returning to the lineup for the best-of-7 series, which Carolina trails 3-2.

"I don't know how that's going to go, but I would say highly doubtful," Brind'Amour said. "We'll see. I guess technically we could have a practice (Monday)."

Svechnikov, the No. 2 pick in the 2018 NHL Draft, remained on the ice for 40 minutes after practice wearing a full face shield. He has three points (two goals, one assist) in the series.

The Hurricanes are without two of their other top-nine forwards. Micheal Ferland has not skated since he was injured by a first-period hit on Capitals forward Tom Wilson in Game 3, and Jordan Martinook did not play in a 6-0 loss in Game 5 after sustaining a lower-body injury in Game 4.

"[Martinook] is trying," Brind'Amour said. "His heart is sure in it. I just don't know if his body is going to let him go. We're going to give it a shot [Monday] and see where we're at. [Ferland] hasn't been on the ice yet, so I can't imagine (he will play)."

Brind'Amour said the injuries have affected the chemistry of the Hurricanes, who sent forward Aleksi Saarela to Charlotte of the American Hockey League on Sunday. He played 9:10 in his NHL debut in Game 5.

"When you take three guys out of our top nine, we were already a little bit thin," Brind'Amour said. "It's the type of guys you're taking out. You're asking a lot for callups and other guys to fill those roles. That's the big challenge we have."

Sebastian Aho (one goal, two assists in the series) is among the players who could add an offensive spark.

"I think he has another gear," Brind'Amour said of the forward. "Obviously, we need him. Our best players probably need to be a little more impactful. He doesn't have to be a superstar, that's for sure."

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