Jonathan Dahlen’s status uncertain after first period injury vs. Capitals

SAN JOSE – Sharks winger Jonathan Dahlen was injured in the first period of Saturday’s game with the Washington Capitals at SAP Center and now his status for the remainder of the team’s homestand appears to be uncertain.

Dahlen came back to start the second period and skated for two shifts before he went back into the Sharks’ dressing room. The Sharks announced later in the period that Dahlen would not return to the game, which the team lost 4-0.

Dahlen was trying to control the puck behind the Capitals’ net when he was bumped by Washington defenseman John Carlson. Just a second later, Dahlen clutched his left shoulder and then grabbed onto the back of the Washington net with his right hand for support.

With the play having moved up the ice, Dahlen then headed straight to the Sharks’ bench and retreated to the team’s dressing room. Play was blown dead with 6:39 left in the period.

Sharks coach Bob Boughner said Dahlen’s upper-body injury was going to get reassessed and that he and the team would know more about his condition in the morning.

The Sharks host the Carolina Hurricanes on Monday, the Ottawa Senators on Wednesday, and the Toronto Maple Leafs on Friday.

“When someone tries it like that, you think it’s not that bad,” Sharks captain Logan Couture said of Dahlen’s brief return. “I’m not exactly sure what it was, I didn’t have enough time to talk to him between periods there at all. He was going to come back and try it, so hopefully, that’s a good sign. We definitely missed him.”

Dahlen, a rookie, came into Saturday with nine points in 15 games and has been on the Sharks’ top line with Couture since the start of training camp in September. Dahlen’s also been a fixture on the Sharks’ power play and is averaging 14:38 of ice time per game.

After Dahlen left the game for a second time, Sharks’ winger Rudolfs Balcers skated in Dahlen’s place on the line with Couture and Timo Meier.

The Capitals led 1-0 at the time of Dahlen’s injury on a goal by Conor Sheary at the 2:17 mark of the first period.

Washington then took a two-goal lead on a power-play goal by Alex Ovechkin at the 13:58 mark. With Marc-Edouard Vlasic serving a delay of game penalty, Ovechkin took a pass from Carlson and ripped a slap from the top of the circle shot past Sharks goalie Adin Hill for his 13th goal of the season and the 743rd goal of his career.

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