Laich aiming for playoffs following surgery

Laich aiming for playoffs following surgery
April 28, 2013, 3:00 pm
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Caps are older and wiser heading into postseason

According to a report by The Washington Post, Capitals left wing Brooks Laich underwent surgery to repair a sports hernia in mid-April and could return to the lineup by the start of the second round of the playoffs, possibly sooner.

Laich first injured his groin while playing in Switzerland during the NHL lockout. He missed all but nine games during the regular season and was removed from the lineup following a win over the Islanders on April 4.

Most sports hernia surgeries require a 4-to-6 week strength and flexibility program. If that holds true for Laich, he could be cleared to begin skating sometime next week.

Capitals coach Adam Oates said Laich aggravated the injury while playing in those nine games, during which the Capitals went 6-2-1.

Caps defrenseman Mike Green, who underwent a similar surgery last season and returned less than five weeks later, told that surgery was Laich’s best option.

“At some point you just have to make a decision,” Green said back on April 12. “He’s a strong mental guy and he’ll come out of this if he works hard.

“…If I were to try to battle through that it could have been years. I talked to him about it and [about] the progress and success I had with mine. It’s night and day.”