Nicklas Backstrom may get the all-clear from doctors this week, allowing him to skate for the Caps ahead of schedule as he recovers from off-season hip surgery. But not all is sunshine and rainbows for the Swedish center; he will still be seen around the league as second fiddle to Alex Ovechkin. I won’t have any of it this year and neither should you.
See, Caps fans should all know by now that Nicklas Backstrom may be the greatest player to never say he’s the greatest. Backie is always concerned with his teammates first and his personal stats second. He was selected right behind Jonathan Toews in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft, a Captian and three-time Stanley Cup winner for the Chicago Blackhawks. Toews plays similarly to Backstrom: assist the star (in Toews’s case, Patrick Kane) first, score goals second. That style has made Backstrom the Capitals franchise leader in assists (427), fifth in points (572), second in assists per game (0.74), and fifth in points per game (0.99). With all that, Backie has been to zero All-Star games.
Zero. Yes; none, nada, zilch, bupkis, gornischt. This fact surfaced last year and garnered some interest, but not enough to make an impact on fan votes.
That said, I want to announce the start (or perhaps continuation from the ground work last year) of a new project: let’s get Nicklas Backstrom to the All-Star Game.
We will need all of Capitals Nation to pitch in and help us. If Zemgus Girgensons can make the All-Star game with the fan vote, then Nickals Backstrom can, too. Once the voting is available, Nicklas Backstrom better be the first name anyone we put on there.