Washington Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom told the media on Wednesday that the nurses inside of the Eastern Conference bubble in Toronto “are doing a great job” with COVID-19 testing. “So far, it’s been great,” he said.
On the Capitals’ second round-robin game against the Philadelphia Flyers on Thursday (4 PM ET, NBC Sports Washington locally, NBCSN nationally), Backstrom said that “This season, Philly’s been great. Obviously want to bring our style (physicality, skill) to the table. To have a chance tomorrow, we have to bring our ‘A’ game.”
Backstrom called Capitals head coach Todd Reirden “high energy,” which is positive, and said that he “reads the game like no one else I’ve seen before [has]. He’s very smart.”
On the Flyers, one of the hottest teams in the NHL dating back to two months before the pause, Backstrom thinks that the coaching change to Alain Vigneault did a lot for them. He thinks that their young players are developing well and the team is overall “so good defensively. I think it’s a combination of everything; they’ve played great hockey,” he said.
Backstrom told the media that he “absolutely” sees a future captain in forward and linemate T.J. Oshie, whom he called positive and energetic. “We’re not surprised but happy to have that on our team,” Backstrom said after his fight sparked the Capitals’ two-goal comeback to pull out a point of their round-robin opener on Monday, a 3-2 shootout loss against the Tampa Bay Lightning.
By Harrison Brown