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Ovechkin OK after injury scare in Capitals scrimmage, bicycle accident

Forward has missed 30 games in 14 NHL seasons

by Tom Gulitti @TomGulittiNHL / Staff Writer

ARLINGTON, Va. -- Alex Ovechkin has had a rough couple of days but said he's fine after falling awkwardly during the Washington Capitals informal scrimmage Monday.

After falling and remaining face down on the ice for more than a minute, the Capitals forward put no weight on his left leg when he was helped off by teammates John Carlson, Tom Wilson and Nicklas Backstrom. Ovechkin then hopped to the locker room on his right skate, but he returned about 10 minutes later and finished the scrimmage before going through a conditioning skate with no apparent issues.

The Capitals captain laughed off the scare afterward.

"It's OK," Ovechkin said. "Last night I fell off my bike."

Ovechkin, who has cuts on the bridge of his nose and left eyebrow from the bicycle accident, said he fell off it while riding around his neighborhood Sunday.

"(Stuff) happens, man." Ovechkin said.

The Capitals, who open training camp Friday, rarely have had to worry about Ovechkin missing time. 

Video: Top 10 plays of 2018-19: Ovechkin

Ovechkin, who turns 34 on Sept. 17, has been remarkably durable during his 14-season NHL career, playing 1,084 of a possible 1,114 regular-season games. He's never missed more than 10 games in a season, and the lone game he sat out the past three seasons was an automatic suspension for skipping the 2019 Honda NHL All-Star Game at San Jose to get extra rest for the remainder of the season.

Ovechkin scored 51 goals last season to lead the NHL for a League-record eighth time. He said at the NHL Player Media Tour in Chicago on Friday that scoring 50 goals again is his objective for this season

It would be Ovechkin's ninth 50-goal season and match Wayne Gretzky and Mike Bossy for the most in League history. The first pick in the 2004 NHL Draft, he ranks 13th in NHL history with 658 goals. 

With 42 goals this season, he'd become the eighth player to reach 700.

"It was always the goal to score as many goals as I can," Ovechkin said Friday. "But every year is harder and harder."

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