Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom will not play in the 2021 IIHF World Championship after getting an invite from Team Sweden.
Aftonbladet’s Per Bjurman reported that “Bäckström has a problem with his hip” according to a translation from RMNB’s Magnus Cadelin.
Caps general manager Brian MacLellan was asked about the report during Capitals’ Breakdown Day on Wednesday.
“He has an injury which I think caught up with him at the end and made it worse,” MacLellan said. “He struggled to be at 100 percent. Nick had a great year. He led our team. He was top 20, 21 in scoring. Really happy with the year he had. Unfortunately, he got worn down at the end.
“We don’t know (if he’ll need surgery),” he added. “I think they’re going through it now with the trainers. They’re going to talk to some doctors and see what the plan is moving forward to manage it.”
Backstrom, who did not look himself in the playoffs, had only one assist in five games against the Boston Bruins. During the regular season, the Swedish center tallied 53 points in 55 games. Backstrom missed the team’s second-to-last game of the season against the Boston Bruins. The Capitals called it a lower-body injury.
In the same story, Carl Hagelin also turned down an opportunity to join the Swedish team. Meanwhile, Alex Ovechkin opted not to play for Russia due to injury while the Capitals held back Ilya Samsonov. Dmitry Orlov, so far, is the only Capitals player taking part in the World Championship.
Headline photo: Elizbeth Kong/RMNB
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