Capitals center Brooks Laich didn't let a mild left knee sprain get in the way of playing in Tuesday night's game against the Southeast Division-leading Florida Panthers.
Laich was in the starting lineup, centering a fourth line with wingers Mike Knuble and Keith Aucoin.
"He wants to play and he wants to help the team win," Capitals coach Dale Hunter said. "He's played through a lot of injuries. He's willing to sacrifice for the team and that's what he does. He's a warrior."
Laich injured his knee Sunday afternoon when he was checked into the boards by Bruins defenseman Dennis Seidenberg.
"Brooksie's one of those guys whose pain tolerance is really good," Hunter said. "He can play through bumps and bruises."
Laich visited with an orthopedist on Monday and skated with his teammates at Kettler Capitals Iceplex Tuesday morning.
Laich has played in 401 of the Capitals 405 games since earning a regular spot after coming to the Capitals from the Ottawa Senators in a 2003 trade for Peter Bondra, who happens to turn 44 today.