Washington Capitals defenseman Matt Niskanen, day-to-day with a lower-body injury, skated at Kettler Capitals Iceplex on Tuesday morning and will travel with the team to Toronto for its game against the Maple Leafs on Wednesday. His status is uncertain.
Niskanen sustained the injury Sunday in the Capitals' 4-3 victory against the Florida Panthers. Colleague Alex Prewitt of The Washington Post noted that Niskanen appeared to take a puck off the ankle in the third period during a five-on-three penalty kill. He did not practice Monday and coach Barry Trotz declined to comment on when the injury occurred.
With 12 points in 38 games this season, Niskanen is on pace for 26, 20 fewer than he totaled in his breakout 2013-14 season with the Pittsburgh Penguins that earned him a seven-year, $40.25 million contract this offseason. Partially responsible for that discrepancy is Niskanen averaging 1:38 per game less on the power play this season compared to last season, a product of Washington's depth at the position. Fifteen of Niskanen's 46 points last season were power-play points.
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