As Caps Suffer More Covid Problems, Can Success Continue?

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Posted December 8, 2021

Garnet Hathaway (Caps Outsdier)

The Capitals announced yesterday that practice today would be canceled and facilities shut down out of an abundance of caution as the team awaits another round of Covid tests.

The plan is for the Caps to practice again on Thursday provided no more positive tests turn up.

This comes after Garnet Hathaway was added to the Covid protocol list Tuesday alongside Nic Dowd and Trevor Van Riemsdyk. As well, the Hershey Bears a facing a more severe outbreak of their own.

“We are trying to do everything we can — like we were doing before we had positives. … We follow the rules. We do our part. These things happen,” said defenseman John Carlson.

Can the Caps sustain this season’s success even with constant obstacles facing them? What if more players test positive?

If more positive tests happens, the Caps can’t really look to the AHL for a call-up because they’re having their own issues. Will the league step in and postpone games?

Of course, this is all a hypothetical situation, and based on the fact that all players and staff are getting tested daily, a full-on outbreak seems unlikely to happen.

Still, it’s cause for concern. The team is still riddled with injuries so depth is extremely concerning. Nicklas Backstrom and Anthony Mantha have no hard return date. Five rookies are regular starters right now. 

And it’s not like losing the three players in the protocol aren’t pretty big losses. Dowd, Van Riemsdyk, and Hathaway have all been steady contributors for the Caps this year.

Although the Caps might be testing positive, they’ve been able to keep positive on the ice and put forth great efforts night in and night out with the bodies they have out there. 

And coach Peter Laviolette acknowledges that.

“Regardless of what’s happened to us, we’ve been able to maintain a consistent level of play that’s been successful for us. That’s 100 percent of the guys.”