Nicklas Backstrom participated in the Capitals morning skate Tuesday, but will likely miss Game Three of the Eastern Conference Final. Backstrom has been out since the tail end of the Penguins series, missing three consecutive games with an injured right hand.
After Backstrom’s skate concluded, however, he did something interesting. The Swedish center signed autographs for fans. That’s not so strange. It’s how he did it that was so odd.
Backstrom kept his right glove on while he signed with a black sharpie.
This could indicate a couple of things.
NBC Sports Washington cameras captured the footage of Backstrom during their airing of Capitals Gameday Live on Facebook.
“I’m impressed he’s able to write with that hand,” Capitals play-by-play announcer Joe Beninati said. “That’s a good sign.”
Beninati then offered this analysis of Backstrom during practice.
“He was passing the puck and playing catch with Barry Trotz a lot during the line rushes, which gave everybody the indication he would not be going today,” Beninati said. “Then I watched him shoot the puck [at] 40 perecent [of his normal] shot strength and quickness. The best shot he was taking was a wrist shot. He was not putting a lot of torque on the injury with respect to a snap shot. At this point in time, I’d be very surprised to not see him play before too long.”
During Barry Trotz’s post-skate press conference, the head coach answered three questions about Backstrom in a rapid-fire sequence.
— Tarik El-Bashir⌨️🎙🏒 (@TarikNBCS) May 15, 2018
Barry Trotz: “Day-to-day.”
Can you rule him out for tonight?
Barry Trotz: “I’m not answering that question.”
Is he making progress?
Barry Trotz: “Yes, absolutely.”
S/T to Sheena Dunn for the heads up.
Headline photo: NBC Sports Washington
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