Report: Max Pacioretty Making Strides in Washington

The Washington Capitals could use a boost on offense. After all, that's why they signed 15-year veteran forward Max Pacioretty this past offseason, despite his ongoing recovery from a torn Achilles tendon. 

The 34-year-old took another big step Saturday morning, hitting the ice for the second time since the injury kept him out of all but five games last year with the Carolina Panthers.

The six-time 30-goal scorer is still a ways away from bolstering the Captials' lineup, but at least he's making progress.

"(It's) a long road back,” coach Spencer Carbery told's Tom Gulitti. “But positive signs. He’s making progress, but a long road.” 

Pacioretty first tore his Achilles before the 2022-23 season; he returned this past January but only got into five games in Carolina before tearing it again and missing the rest of the season. 

He signed a one-year, $2M deal with the Caps this past summer, as both sides were willing to take the chance. From Pacioretty's point of view, he was willing to bet on himself. 

“I've never been a free agent before and obviously coming off an injury, there were a couple of scenarios how I could have played it,” Pacioretty said after signing with Washington in July. “At the end of the day, I just thought that Washington was a great opportunity for me to come back and prove that I'm still the player that I once was and that I'm capable of coming back and scoring goals.”

There's currently no set timeline for his return to NHL action, and the Capitals are willing to wait for the former Montreal Canadien and Vegas Golden Knight, though they hope he can return sooner than later; the Caps are currently second-last in the entire NHL in scoring, at just 1.89 goals per game heading into Saturday night's action.

Photo: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports