TJ Oshie is still dealing with back injuries he developed while playing with a broken leg last season

Over the past two seasons, TJ Oshie missed 55 out of 131 games due to injury and illness. During his tenure with the Capitals, he played all regular season games just once in a season.

The Washington Post’s Samantha Pell recently spoke with Oshie about his struggles staying in line. The crafty winger says his absences during the 2022-23 campaign have been directly linked to back problems.

Oshie struggled with back problems last season as he struggled to overcome pain from a broken leg.

During last season’s Breakdown Day, Oshie revealed that he broke his leg on Oct. 27 against the Detroit Red Wings. The injury put the right winger in a walking boot, on crutches and eventually led to him missing time with a back injury.

“This year has been crazy because the first couple games I felt really good,” Oshie said at the time. “Then (you) shoot yourself in the leg and break your leg. It doesn’t feel the same. I still had to change my skates in the playoffs. Everything kind of flowed from that. Who knows? If I don’t break my leg, maybe I won’t miss a game. You guys know me so well that when I can put my foot in a skate and I can move, I want to play. I came out of the San Jose game with a sore leg, but I thought I could play and make an impact. Then the back came out for no reason in that game and it just snowballed from there.”

Less than a month after breaking his foot, Oshie attempted to return on Nov. 20 against the Sharks and limped to his feet while skating. He missed another two weeks with a back injury. Oshie suggested that injuries lingered for the rest of the season, and that has remained the case this season.

The 36-year-old forward missed 17 games before this year’s All-Star break in two separate stretches.

“It’s kind of the reality of where I am in my career,” Oshie told Pell. “The last four times I’ve been out [of the lineup], it’s been for the same thing since last year, and there’s even one time before that. So it’s something I have to deal with and if I stay on top of it, then I’ll be fine.”

His most recent suspension came after he suffered a back check against the Toronto Maple Leafs on December 17th. He missed six games with what the team called an upper-body injury.

“I think there’s always anxiety because of history,” head coach Peter Laviolette said after that game.

Oshie also had surgery on his core during the offseason.

While such issues can keep a player down in the dumps, Oshie doesn’t let that happen to him.

“I don’t think about my back or what I have to do about it,” Oshie said. “I’m just playing and having fun playing out there. For every game, regular season or playoffs, I usually do what I can to contribute to a win that night.

“That’s a lot,” he continued. “I have to do a lot of extra work, but I don’t feel too bad.”

That kind of hard work was on full display in last year’s playoffs, when Oshie played his most productive hockey of the year, leading the Capitals in goals (6) and points (7). Oshie is one of six players to reach double figures in goals this season. He has 17 points in 32 games (10g, 7a).

Header photo: Alan Dobbins/RMNB

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top