Nicklas Backstrom on Capitals’ Struggles: “I Feel Like We’re Just Putting Ourselves In Bad Spots…We’re Not Creating As Much As We Should”

Washington Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom spoke to the media following Sunday’s 4-1 loss to the Ottawa Senators at Capital One Arena. He discussed the team’s frustrating struggles, which include allowing shorthanded goals and the crumbling power-play.

The Capitals have allowed two shorthanded goals in the past four games and seven total this season. “That’s something that happened way too many times this year,” Backstrom said on the issue, adding, “It’s on us. We’ve got to be better there. We can’t allow them to score a shorthanded goal like that.”

Backstrom acknowledged that the team hasn’t “played with the flow” they’re used to. “I feel like we’re just putting ourselves in bad spots—d-zone, neutral zone, we’re not creating as much as we should, so I just think that everything needs to be better. We got to, I don’t know what it is, I feel like we just got to relax and try to play our game here because that is not our game.”

On Washington’s deteriorating power-play, he admitted that those struggles do get in their heads. “That’s just natural…You want that power-play to click because you know that can help win hockey games, so it gets a little frustrating…Squeezing the stick a little too hard. That’s part of it for sure. We can be better using the whole ice, not just around the boards.”

“We’ve been in this situation before…it’s not going to be perfect every day, so I think when we get out of this, we’re going to be stronger as a team, and it starts tomorrow with a good practice and then we go on the road…You see every other team is buzzing right now and we are not. That is something we have to get back to.”

The Capitals are back in action on Tuesday visiting the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena. NBC Sports Washington will have the coverage starting at 8 PM ET.

By Della Young

About Della Young

Della Young is an aspiring novelist and screenwriter who earned a BFA in Creative Writing from Full Sail University in 2021. She is currently pursuing a Master of Arts in Screenwriting from Regent University. Della comes from a family of big Capitals fans and became inspired to start writing for hockey in 2019. In her spare time, she enjoys traveling, cooking, and working on both sides of the camera. Follow Della on Twitter: @dellayoung
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2 Responses to Nicklas Backstrom on Capitals’ Struggles: “I Feel Like We’re Just Putting Ourselves In Bad Spots…We’re Not Creating As Much As We Should”

  1. Diane Doyle says:

    I’m ready for some drastic changes to the power play, as in limiting the personnel to only those players that also do PK. Emphasis on two way forwards and defenseman. No more offense only players. Nicky, Kuzy, and Wilson can remain as they also all do PK.

    They give up entirely too many shorties. And then the PP isn’t even effective anyhow. So time to have strategy to limit any potential damage. (Or maybe the guys who frequently draw the penalties get rewarded with PP time.)

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