The NHL players’ association released a statement Friday saying its members fully support the United States women’s team in its ongoing labor dispute with USA Hockey, but some players appear to be willing to go further to back the cause.
Hockey agent Allan Walsh tweeted Sunday about rumors in NHL circles that American players might boycott the upcoming World Championships to show their solidarity with the women’s team, and USA Today Sports later confirmed such discussions have taken place.
Anybody losing their top player, it’s obviously a gigantic hole, Boucher said. But we’ve had games without Erik. We were playing it tight, and we have to play the same way. We don’t have the same breakout abilities. We don’t have the same taking the rush abilities, the transition into the offensive zone and all that … the power play … but I think as a team, our game won’t change. We’re playing the same way. We’re expecting our players to buy in.
Karlsson previously missed two games with a foot injury but returned Monday to record a goal and assist in a shootout loss to the Red Wings. He added another goal in Tuesday’s win over Detroit but failed to finish the game.
Karlsson leads the Senators with 71 points (17 goals, 54 assists) through 77 games and ranks fourth in the NHL in average ice time at 26:50 per game.
Ottawa can clinch the postseason with one point against the Bruins or losses by the Lightning and Islanders.