It’s still early, but Nicklas Backstrom has looked like a different player in the 2023 preseason. The Capitals’ all-time assist leader has seemingly found the fountain of youth after struggling through hip-related issues for the last few years.
A full 15 months after hip resurfacing surgery, Backstrom has spent the entirety of Training Camp centering the first line and he’s looked dominant in that role thus far. He’s played big minutes in the two preseason games he’s suited up in and has not looked a step behind in Spencer Carbery’s new quick-moving system.
Recently, Tom Wilson praised the Super Swede in an interview, saying that Backstrom “looked amazing.”
“He looked like himself from 10 years ago,” Wilson said. “He was moving his feet really well. I’ll play with that guy any day of the week. He’s such a smart player. He makes the guys on the ice around him better.”