Nicklas Backstrom has played all 12 of his seasons in the NHL with the Washington Capitals – the team that originally drafted him in 2006. During that time, Backstrom has become a father, an NHL All-Star, and a Stanley Cup champion.
The Swedish center will become an unrestricted free agent after next season when his 10-year, $67 million contract officially expires. But if Backstrom had his way, he wouldn’t even make it to free agency.
“Honestly, I haven’t really thought about it,” Backstrom said of his contract. “I played here my whole career. I would like to stay here. I love it here so if they want me, it’s a two-sided story.
“It’s all I know,” Backstrom said smiling. “It’s crazy, but at the same time, it’s a great feeling. I couldn’t ask for anything better from the fans or the city of Washington.”
According to the CBA (and if I read this right), the Capitals can sign a new contract with Backstrom as soon as July 1 when the new “league year” begins.
In 895 games with the Capitals, Backstrom has scored 231 goals and assisted on 642 more, tallying nine 50-assist seasons. During his time in Washington, the Capitals have won their division nine times and been the best team in the regular season three different years.
“I feel like we have a great group of guys and a good system that everyone believes in,” Backstrom said.
Backstrom is set to be a free agent the same time Braden Holtby will be. Holtby also said he’d “love” to sign an extension.
“I’m not thinking about it. I’m just trying to move ahead for next year,” Backstrom said. “I’ve got one more year. Right now it’s out of my hands. We’ll talk about it when it gets closer.”
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